Passiflora, known also as the passion flowers or passion vines, is a genus of about 500 species of flowering plants, the namesakes of the family Passifloraceae. They are mostly vines, with some being shrubs, and a few species being herbaceous. The monotypic genus Hollrungia seems to be inseparable from Passiflora, but further study is needed.
Nine species of Passiflora are native to the USA, found from Ohio to the north, west to California and south to the Florida Keys. Most other species are found in South America, Eastern Asia, and Southern Asia, New Guinea, four or more species in Australia and a single endemic species in New Zealand. New species continue to be identified: for example, P. pardifolia and P. xishuangbannaensis have only been known to the scientific community since 2006 and 2005, respectively.
Some species of Passiflora have been naturalised beyond their native ranges. For example, Blue Passion Flower (P. caerulea) now grows wild in Spain. The purple passionfruit (P. edulis) and its yellow relative P. flavicarpa have been introduced in many tropical regions as commercial crops. A number of species of Passiflora are cultivated outside their natural range because of their beautiful flowers. Hundreds of hybrids have been named; hybridising is currently being done extensively for flowers, foliage and fruit.
This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos Meme.