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Passiflora edulis f. edulis Seed Giveaway. Unfazed by 24 F, Killed by Raccoons

A friend in Palo Alto had a big, heavily fruiting P. edulis f. edulis (self-fertile, small-fruited, dark purple passionfruit). It survived the cold without significant damage in December of 2013, only to be killed by raccoons last year that dug the plant up, presumably in search of worms.

My friend gave me a bunch of fruits last year (I forget the month) after the raccoons did their thing. I ate a couple and the rest have sat around in my kitchen since then. They completely dried out and got a bit moldy as well. Passionfruit seeds should be sown relatively fresh, however drying them inside the fruit is probably as good a way of preserving the viability as any.

For those who aren't familiar, here's P. edulis f. edulis in bloom. This is actually the Nancy Garrsison clone, a different clone than the one my friend grew:

Unwripe fruits:

The desiccated fruits, before I cleaned them out yesterday:

I split the contents (which are dried and full of dead mold, etc) into 11 roughly equal piles:

I cleaned one of the 11 piles, in the upper right, and counted 65 seeds:

So I don't know how many seeds are in each of the 10 remaining piles.

I also don't know what fraction of seeds are viable (if any).

If anyone is interested in any of the uncleaned seeds, I can send one of the 10 piles for:

A) $3, probably Paypal, or send cash: close to the price of a bubble envelope plus First Class shipping


B) Send a stamped, self-addressed bubble envelope (SASBE)

Again, the seeds would be sent with all the extra "stuff" (dried and possibly moldy arils) as shown above.

I'll soak the cleaned seeds, plant them, and follow up, if anyone wants to wait to see if they are viable. I expect germination (hopefully) in about a month or two.

P. edulis normally takes about 2-3 years from seed to bloom, I think.
Trust me: you guys want these things.

If you can get even a single fruit you will never taste anything better. They are the most delicious fruit I've ever eaten. Large plant, so think grow tent, greenhouse, etc., or subtropical climate. If you have enough dedicated sunny window space you *might* be able to get away with indoor growing.

Anyhoo, just my 2 cents.
Mother of god. Im very interested..
Do these live past a year/over winter? Im thinking they have to be frost protected
They can take to about the mid 20s, probably. I was surprised that the plant had very little damage after 24 F last December, and almost an entire month of frost in Palo Alto. It's possible they can be killed back to the roots and come back from as low as about 20 F, I think.

The purple form of P. edulis (P. edulis f. edulis) is much more cold tolerant than the yellow one (P. edulis flavicarpa) and a bit more cold tolerant than hybrids with both in their background (such as 'Frederick'). Another advantage of this variety is that it is self-fertile and self-pollinating. It's also best for areas with cool summers.

My concern is that there is some chance that these seeds are not viable. The only way to find out is to plant them, and I might not know for a few weeks. I think they are probably viable.
Hm. I live in zone 5B And I really dont wana see these die over winter.
Meh.. Ill give them a try
I'm going to add to the offer.

I just visited a friend who grows P. edulis 'Frederick', and who gave me a bunch of fruits.. 'Frederick' is the Patrick Worley hybrid that has in its background both the small purple form and the larger yellow one. The fruit is red when ripe, and is best allowed to wrinkle about (like the purple P. edulis).

From those fruits I have more seeds. So far I opened one, and it looks like 200-300 seeds, maybe. I can add 20+ seed of 'Frederick' to those above of P. edulis f. edulis (purple P. edulis). As hybrid seeds, they can be different from the parent. Their fruit should still be good.

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NemJones, I tried to message you, but your mailbox is full.
Just cleared it, sorry about that.
Very tempting... I'm not familiar with the species, but from your pictures they appear to be vining plants? Do they need to be growing vertical, or can they sprawl across the ground and produce fruits (e.g., cucumbers)?

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They'll grow vertical as long as they can, and fall over if they don't have support.

I think I have been enticed to try, I will PM.
  • #11
xvart, they are definitely climbing plants, with vines that can quickly cover fences (or sometimes trees) if they are happy. I don't grow P. edulis now, but I used to have it trained on a fence. That's a good question as to whether they can be grown as a groundcover, and surprsingly, I've never heard of anyone trying it. Of course, a huge vine, unpruned, will kind of go everywhere, with parts trailing on the ground. I don't see why it couldn't do that in principle. Most people I know are trying to fit as many plants as they can in a small space, so "up" is a good option.

One thing to keep in mind for clmbing is that the tendrils need something of the appropriate size to grab and wrap around. Most wooden lattices won't work by themselves. Chain link fences are great, as are thick wire or twine that they can grab onto.