The Banana Passion Fruit belongs as the Maracuja to the Passionflower family (Passifloraceae). Four species of this genus produce delicious fruits, in addition to the Banana Passion Fruit these are the Sweet Granadilla (Passiflora ligularis), the Purple Passion Fruit (Passiflora edulis) and the Giant Granadilla (Passiflora quadrangularis). The old botanical name of the Banana Passion Fruit is Passiflora mollissima. The fruits of the Banana Passion Fruit are up to ten centimetres long, longish and in the case of full ripeness yellow-skinned. They have a pleasant sourly, apple-like flavour. From time to time you can find Banana Passion Fruits also in German fruit sections, are mostly green-skinned and therefore unripe, though. For seed extraction these fruits are sufficient because most seeds have already gained their germination ability. However, as regards taste these specimens are a complete failure. Fruits are plain sour, without flavour.
Banana Passion Fruits are perennial creepers from the high levels of Colombia. The single sprouts can reach a length of several metres, in old age slightly woody stem, vine-like leafage, very attractive red blossoms. Also in Germany, after pollination the plants can produce a handful of fruits within a year.
Propagation and culture are not difficult. Give cleaned seeds separate circa two centimetres into the soil, keep them evenly moist, avoid waterlogging. Thereafter cultivate the plant all-year warm and light. Lay the sprouts closely to a growth support. An occasional cutting is well tolerated and conducive for the flower formation. In summer, a good place is in the garden in direct sun. Just as night temperatures decline longer under 10°C , the plant should be brought indoors, there grant it a slight dormancy at 12 – 15°C at a light place. First blossoms are produced after two to three years.
Banana Passion Fruits are more modest in culture than the Purple Passion Fruit and the Sweet Granadilla. The growth of the Banana Passion Fruit is very well, it tends also to a rich spontaneous branching. A cutting is not necessary, but is well tolerated. The Banana Passion Fruit is substantially less temperature-sensitive as its relatives, even in autumn, when temperatures decline under 10°C at night, the Banana Passion Fruit still shows a good growth. The deep three-lobate leaves are produced not until a height of circa 40 – 50 centimetres, previously leaves are rather round, although already three-lobate. As yet, in winter I had problems with spider mites in the case of Banana Passion Fruits. However, the plant was yet spared from an aphid attack.
At the end of the year, the from seeds raised plants were circa 20 cm high.
The plant gained fairly, the height was over one metre at the end of the year. In addition, the plant showed a rich branching. A spider mite attack gave the plant a hard fight in winter.
Relatively vigorous budding once the plant stands in sun again.