Passion (fruit)

As you may recall, I have two passion flower vines in my garden this year. One potted that that the raccoons stripped of fruits, and one growing on my pergola which has been untouched. I've been checking those fruits every week or so, but haven't noticed them getting any riper -- although I don't have much experience with knowing a ripe fruit from an unripe one.

A few days ago with our first freeze imminent, I pulled a couple of the fruits down to sample them and see if they were as sweet and delicious as the one fruit I tried earlier.


When you hold one of these fruits, they feel like an empty shell -- very light and hollow.

That's because they do have quite a bit of empty space in them.

At least this one does -- it was the lighter of the two. The edible part of the fruits surround the seeds (like a pomegranate) and they are removed pretty easily:

I'm not sure how exactly to eat these, so I just pop some into my mouth and suck the juices out. Then I'm left with a mouth full of seeds, which I don't eat.

The "rind" of the second fruit peeled off differently, leaving a tissue-thin membrane over the seeds:

This one felt heavier and once it was open it was obvious why: it was packed with seeds!

I like the connecting structure -- once the seeds are removed you can pretend it's a friendly space caterpillar, or deep-sea slug:

It turns out that these fruits were not quite ripe -- very tart!

Too tart to be delicious, so I'll wait a while more before picking the remaining few fruits. I don't know how much more they can ripen at this time of year, but I won't enjoy them too much if they don't.

I'll be saving a bunch of these seeds to see if they'll germinate for me in the spring. I don't need more than the two plants I already have (especially since I've read that they sucker, so I'll have to dig up the unwanted shoots and will therefore have a constant supply of new plants) but it will be nice to have a bunch more of these fantastic plants that I can share around the neighborhood.


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Gerhard Bock (Succulents and More)  – (November 14, 2011 at 10:58 AM)  

These look so white compared to the (tropical) passionfruits I'm used to (see here). I wonder if yours would ripen to the same color?

But regardless of the color, the taste is all that matters.

Note to myself: I've got to grow passionfruit next year!! :-)

:: Bamboo and More ::

Christine @ the Gardening Blog  – (November 14, 2011 at 11:15 AM)  

Those look quite unripe to me - I wouldn't expect them to be sweet yet. I love passion fruit. The photos are great!

Alan  – (November 14, 2011 at 11:37 AM)  

Christine -- the ripe one I had a few weeks back looked exactly the same. You're probably familiar with the tropical passionfruit that Gerhard mentioned. Needless to say, I don't don't grow the tropical type -- this one is cold-hardy here in St. Louis.

short sale chicago  – (November 15, 2011 at 4:55 AM)  

If you are like most people, you live for the day of a nice tropical vacation. Maybe you're lucky enough to have actually gone on one and the memories of that keep some of those tough days from bringing you down. Most of us have some type of trigger in our minds that can immediately transport us back to that day when we're sitting on the beach. Maybe it's reliving that moment when you had that delicious passion fruit drink that had your eyes rolling in the back of your head. Now if you only knew how to make passion fruit juice you could relive that memory anytime you want it

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