Corono de Cristo (Passion Flower)

Passiflora foetida var. gossypifolia

Passionflower, Stinking Passionflower

About This Plant

Sun/part shade; a fast-growing native vine with, as the name suggests, leaves that emit a spicy odor when damaged. The reddish fruits contain a somewhat sweet flavored pulp. The unique floral structure and the numbers of its parts were used by Spanish missionaries to teach the story of the last days of Jesus. Indispensable in the butterfly garden, passion flower is the food source for the Gulf Fritillary butterfly. (The caterpillars look spiky but are harmless – let them munch away if you want loads of butterflies.) Passionflower is considered a protocarnivorous plant, with sticky enzymes that trap and partially digest insects to discourage predation. Various passion flowers are available in the landscape trade, some invasive, but this species is native throughout the New World.

Origins: Southwestern U.S., Caribbean, and tropical Americas.


None required; expect it to freeze back in winter.

A great native food source for the Gulf Fritillary Butterfly caterpillar.

Min. Height: 10'

Max Height: 40 feet'

Min. Width: 6'

Max Width: 8 feet'

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