Losing the Passion For Passionfruit

OK, so last year, I had this great idea to plant a passionfruit against our fence. This is not the first I’ve planted but IT WILL BE THE LAST!

How Gorgeous, you say…well, think again!

We dreamed of loads of juicy, fragrant, passionfruit pulp oozing over freshly whipped cream on top of home-made pavlova and the sheer joy of knowing that I had grown them myself.

I already had this in mind when I planted my vine

I carefully chose a Nellie Kelly Grafted passionfruit and here’s what Nellie Kelly say about it…”

Nellie Kelly Grafted Black Passionfruit

Passiflora caerulea (rootstock), Passiflora edulis (scion)

The Nellie Kelly Grafted Black Passionfruit has delighted generations of Australian gardeners with its hardy rootstock and tasty fruit. The grafted black is grown around Australia, from the cooler south to the northern sub-tropics and is self-fertile, requiring only one plant. The vine produces round, medium-sized fruit that is soft to firm with a juicy tanginess that sweetens as the fruit wrinkles and matures over summer and autumn. The Nellie Kelly Grafted Black Passionfruit vine will cover an area of 6 to 8 square meters during an 8 to 10-year lifespan, producing up to 400 pieces of fruit each season.

Plant in a sunny, well-drained area and expect flowers from early spring with fruit ripening during summer. With any grafted plant it is vitally important to remove any growth below the graft, including suckers, using a sharp knife or blade.”

I prepared the hole as I always tell people with lots of “good tucker”, my personal planting mix, a lovely rich blend of mature compost and blood and bone, some people even say you should put a whole cows liver into the planting but I did not go that far this time.

I picked one out from the nursery which looked just like this one.

I planted it and watered it in well, it was growing very nicely along the trellis then one day I spotted the first, day two, three more and…..

what they don’t say is that this baby can send out suckers

…not just a few either…

They are EVERYWHERE!

They are popping up all through my lawn.

They have gone under the fence into our neighbours’ yard, right through my perennial border plantings, around the base of all of our deciduous trees and every single morning, I am pulling out new suckers. It is a job that I could well do without on a warm summer’s day…and to date-no flowers-all the energy in that plant is going into those darn suckers which are trying to take over my whole yard. The leaves are quite different from the grafted plant, much lighter green and on thin evil, tentacle-like vine stems that grab onto everything alive or dead.

So, if you’re looking for me this summer, it looks like, I will be in the backyard pulling out very much unwanted, very much un-loved and super annoying Passiflora caerulea, ROOTSTOCK!!!!

Next year, I’m buying locally grown passionfruit pulp or making friends with someone who has too many and I will let someone else deal with these suckers!

Imagine this growing in your backyard!

 

Have you ever planted something that went nuts in your garden????

 

Photos Courtesy of Nellie Kelly-Thanks they are lovely!