Click on images to enlarge
infestation (Photo: Trevor James)
climbing habit (Photo: Trevor James)
creeping habit with narrower leaves (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr, USGS)
close-up of three-lobed leaf (Photo: Trevor James)
close-up of flower bud and coiled tendril (Photo: Trevor James)
pale pink flower (Photo: Trevor James)
flower from side-on showing long floral tube and two basal bracts (Photo: Trevor James)
close-up of yellow stamens, hairy ovary and styles topped with green stigmas (Photo: Trevor James)
young fruit (Photo: Trevor James)
mature fruit with pulp and seeds (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr, USGS)
seedlings (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr, USGS)
the very similar Passiflora tripartita var. mollissima (Photo: Trevor James)
Passiflora tarminiana Coppens & V.E. Barney
Passiflora mollissima (Kunth) L.H. Bailey (misapplied)
Native to tropical South America (i.e. Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela).
This species is becoming widely naturalised in south-eastern Australia (i.e. it is naturalised in the coastal districts of eastern New South Wales, in Tasmania, in southern Victoria and in south-eastern South Australia). Also sparingly naturalised in south-eastern Queensland.
Naturalised overseas in eastern Africa, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Hawaii, New Zealand and on La R union.
- a vigorous climbing plant with and hairy younger stems.
- coiled tendrils are borne in the forks of its alternately arranged leaves.
- its leaves have three pointed lobes with toothed margins and softly hairy undersides.
- its large pale pink flowers (about 6 cm across) hang downwards and have a long greenish-coloured floral tube.
- its oval or slightly elongated fruit (7-14 cm long) turn yellow or pale orange when mature.
Stems and Leaves
The alternately arranged leaves (7-16 cm long) are deeply three-lobed and borne on hairy stalks (i.e. pubescent petioles) 1.5-4 cm long. They have toothed (i.e. serrate) margins and the lobes are pointed (i.e. acuminate). Their upper surfaces are hairless or almost hairless (i.e. glabrous or sparsely pubescent), while their undersides are softly hairy (i.e. pubescent).
Flowers and Fruit
The large pale pink flowers (about 6 cm across and 9-10 cm long) are borne singly in the leaf forks on stalks (i.e. peduncles) 3-10 cm long. These flowers hang downwards (i.e. they are pendent) and at the base of the each flower are a pair of bracts (3-4 cm long and 2-3 cm wide) that can be mistaken for sepals. The five sepals and five petals are all very similar in size (4.5-6 cm long and 1.2-2.5 cm wide) and colour. Their bases are joined together, forming a very long and narrow greenish-coloured floral tube (i.e. hypanthium) 6-8 cm long and 7-10 mm wide. Each flower also has five stamens and a hairy ovary topped with three white styles ending in green stigmas. Flowering can occur throughout the year.
The fruit is an elongated or oval (i.e. ellipsoid) berry that turns from green to yellow or pale orange in colour as it matures. These fruit (7-14 cm long and 3.5-4.5 cm wide) are hairy (i.e. pubescent) when young and contain numerous seeds in an orange-coloured pulp. These seeds are reddish-brown when dry with a patterned surface texture (i.e. they are reticulate).
Reproduction and Dispersal
Banana passionfruit (Passiflora tarminiana) is regarded as an environmental weed in Victoria, Tasmania and New South Wales and as a potential environmental weed or "sleeper weed " in other parts of southern Australia.
Not declared or considered noxious by any state government authorities.
For information on the management of this species see the following resources:
- the Banana passionfruit page on the South Coast Weeds website at http://www.esc.nsw.gov.au/Weeds/index.asp.
Anonymous (2005). National List of Naturalised Invasive and Potentially Invasive Garden Plants. Version 1.1. World Wildlife Fund - Australia (WWF Australia).
Anonymous (2007). Weeds Australia. http://www.weeds.org.au. National Weeds Strategy Executive Committee, Launceston, Tasmania.
Barker, B., Barker, R., Jessop, J. and Vonow, H. (2005). Census of South Australian Vascular Plants. Fifth Edition. The Botanic Gardens of Adelaide and State Herbarium, Government of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia.
Blood, K. (2001). Environmental Weeds: a field guide for SE Australia. C.H. Jerram and Associates - Science Publishers, Mt. Waverley, Victoria.
Bostock, P.D. and Holland, A.E. (2007). Census of the Queensland Flora 2007. Queensland Herbarium, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Brisbane, Queensland.
Buchanan, A.M. (2007). A Census of the Vascular Plants of Tasmania and Index to The Student s Flora of Tasmania. Web Edition for 2007. http://www.tmag.tas.gov.au/Herbarium/TasVascPlants.pdf. Tasmanian Herbarium, Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery (TMAG), Hobart, Tasmania.
Coppens d'Eeckenbrugge, G., Barney, V.E., Jorgensen, P.M. and MacDougal, J.M. (2001). Passiflora tarminiana, a new cultivated species of Passiflora subgenus Tacsonia. Novon 11: 8-15.
Harden, G.J. and Wilson, P. (2007). Passiflora tarminiana Coppens & V.Barney. PlantNET - The Plant Information Network System of Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, Australia. http://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au. Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, New South Wales.
Miles, J. (2007). Banana passionfruit (Passiflora mollissima). South Coast Weeds. http://www.esc.nsw.gov.au/Weeds/index.asp.
Walsh, N.G. and Stajsic, V. (2007). A Census of the Vascular Plants of Victoria. Eighth Edition. National Herbarium of Victoria, South Yarra, Victoria.