Passion flowers can be planted in spring or early Autumn when the soil is still warm, and the autumn rains will water the plant until it is well-established. If planted in spring or summer, it will be necessary to ensure the plant has plenty of water until established, after which it will look after itself. An ideal planting place for a Passion flower is a sheltered spot, southwest or west facing, close to wall if possible to protect from cold winds and in well-drained soil which is on the moist side, not too dry. If the ground is too dry, or there are dry conditions it may be necessary to water Passion flowers.
Passion flowers grow best and produce the most flowers in full sun, when they may also produce fruits in form of orange /yellow oval fruits. Hardy Passion flowers will survive most of our winters, but in colder areas the plant will need protection such as a mulch to the roots, or even a hessian cover during the coldest months. Passion flower will grow in any soil, alkaline or acid, and in moist soil provided it is well drained.
Passion flowers require little or no maintenance and can be vigorous growing up to 8-12 meters. They can be grown in a container, but will require a largish container given they are a vigorous climber. Also, by necessity, the more tender varieties will need to be grown in a container to bring under cover for winter.
Gardening advise often makes mention of growing passion flowers in a conservatory. The problem is that many conservatories in the summer reach high temperatures which makes it a hostile environment for most plants. (An exception are Pelargoniums which tolerate conservatory conditions.) Unless your conservatory is well-ventilated, cooled and with a good amount of shade it is likely to be too hot and bake most plants including passion flowers.
Passiflora caerulea 'Constance Elliott' is hardy to H4 and is illustrated top centre. It will need a more sheltered spot and is a little more tender than the blue variety. It has lovely white flowers which have the additional benefit of being scented. It will need winter protection.
The third image on the right, P.violacea is more tender still and will only withstand temperatures down to 1.C and will need glass or greenhouse protection over winter.
The latin name for Passion flower, is Passiflora, so called after the Passion of Christ. It is said that the stigmas and anthers represent the nails on the cross and the wounds.
There are lots of attractive climbing plants to choose from for your garden. For more information, images and growing advice about climbing plants.