Passiflora ambigua | The Italian Collection of Maurizio Vecchia

Passiflora ambigua, information, classification, temperatures. etymology of Passiflora ambigua. Discover the Italian Passiflora Collection by Maurizio Vecchia.

Passiflora ambigua | The Italian Collection of Maurizio Vecchia

Systematics (J. Macdougal et al., 2004)

SUBGENUS: passiflora
SUPERSECTION: laurifolia
SERIES: laurifoliae


 From southern Mexico to Panama.




Denomination due to some of its morphological structures that are similar to that of other species, in particular P. laurifolia,  and such to create confusion (Lat. ambiguus: doubt, confused)



That this passiflora belongs to the Laurifolia section is evident in the posture of the corona. The outermost string of filaments is shorter and more spread apart than the others. It is very similar to P. laurifolia itself from which it differs for the size of the whole leaves, which are ovate-lanceolate, glossy and leathery, and larger (from 10 to 20 cm in length, from 5 to 9 in width), for the position of the 2 glands of the petiole, which are placed asymmetrically at about half of its length, and also for the different colouring of the corolla.

The flower of this plant manifests personality and grace at the same time. While the petals and the retroflex sepals are light pink, thanks to a delicate and fine punctuation, the large and moving crown of the filaments, in 5 series, is characterised by alternating violet, purple and white bands of much more intense colour.

The flower, which is striking and decorative, is remarkable in size, reaching up to 12 cm in diameter. When ripe, the globular fruit, with a diameter of about 6 cm, is orange in colour. It is edible and has a pleasant taste, so much so that the plant was cultivated by the ancient Mayan peoples.

The area of origin of this passiflora lies between southern Mexico and the region of the Panama Canal. It also lives in mountainous areas at low altitudes. It is a large and robust vine.

The ideal environment for growing it and seeing it in bloom is a greenhouse with a tropical climate. The minimum winter temperature required is in fact at least 13°C. P. ambigua is also sought after by collectors of exotic butterflies for the breeding of caterpillars.

Reproduction by seed is rapid with a good percentage of germination. Cuttings also root easily.