Sunday, 28 December 2008

Passiflora mollissima

Bot. Mag., Nº 4187

Passiflora mollissima
Bot. Reg. for 1846 plate 11
Paxton's Mag. of Bot., vol. xiii, p.25

Tacsonia " a genus of very ornamental climbing plants, with the habit of the Passion Flowers, but easily distinguished from them by the immense length of the tube of the calyx. The name Tacsonia is derived from that applied to one of the species in Peru. There are numerous species in the genus, but only two as yet have been introduced." Jane Loudon Ladies' Flower-garden of Ornamental Greenhouse Plants (1848).
The two species referred by Mrs. Loudon were Tacsonia pinnatistipula Juss. and Tacsonia mollissima H. B. et K. She describes the plant as "not so ornamental as T. pinnatistipula" though of similar growth and thriving best in a conservatory. A native of the tropics of New Granada, it grows at an altitude of nine to eleven thousand feet, thus suited to a temperate climate. When grown in a stove the blossoms fall off without expanding.

Found by Humboldt at santa Fè de Bogota, and Lobb in woods near Quito. Raised from seeds sent to Veitch at Exeter. (1844).

An important identifying characteristic of this species is the presence of 12 green glands which stud the purple petiole.

Photograph of genuine Passiflora mollissima from Mobot

The plant generally grown under this name in Portugal is a hybrid.

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