Spring has sprung in San Francisco! Yes, it’s only March, but with the coming of the cherry blossoms and the longer, sunnier days you can’t help but want to be in nature- and if you’re like me- start growing things.
One of my favorite local flowers is the Passionflower, which grows wild all over the city- especially the Mission and Bernal Heights. I have long admired a neighbor’s Blue Passionflower vine that covers a whole fence and blooms spectacularly ornate white and purple flowers for several months of the year. It’s always covered in butterflies, and crawls up and down a fairytale trellis and around the fence- seriously, it’s magical.
They appear around SF in a variety of colors from punchy pink to subtle beautiful white.
I’ve tried growing passionflower before from seed but never had any luck- not even one sprout! Womp womp. But this year I was ready- and when my neighbor’s vine finally fruited, I grabbed a few of those suckers and gave it a go. After collecting and drying the seeds, I eventually planted them. A few weeks later my seedlings appeared! I could not be more proud, so I thought I’d share!
S T E P O N E :
Spot and pick your passion fruit! The seeds are in the fruit, which form after the flowers have died. You can see in the photo the dried up flower shape above the fruit. When a passion fruit is ready to be picked it will be very yellow and come off the vine easily.
S T E P T W O :
Cut your fruit open and squeeze all the seeds out into a cup or bowl.
S T E P T H R E E :
Wash your seeds and get as much of the gooey stuff off as possible. Rinse and repeat until they are clean.
S T E P F O UR :
Spread your seeds out on a piece of paper or in a glass dish/tray. Leave in a dry area of your home where they won’t be disturbed. Your seeds will shrivel up and not look like weird gooey shit soon! After a few weeks, the seeds are fully dried, plant a few seeds a few inches apart 1/2 inch deep in a medium size pot and water daily. Keep the soil moist and place in the sunniest spot you have. I started mine on the roof last month.
Passionflower seeds can take weeks, even months to sprout- but when they do it’s magical.
The waiting is the hardest part, but so worth it!
There are so many amazing vines around San Francisco and the passionflower comes in an array of colors. If you see a ripe fruit, grab one and try growing your own!