Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Passiflora laurifolia - Botanical magazine Vol I Nº13 (1815)

The Botanical register consisting of coloured figures of exotic plants cultivated in British gardens with their history and mode of treatment Sydenham Teast Edwards, John Lindley

One of the oldest stove-plants in our collections, having been introduced from the West Indies by Mr. Bentinck, afterwards Lord Portland, in 16*90. It has been found wild by Plumier and Jacquin in the Island of Martinique, growing only in the closest groves and thickets, where it winds itself round the trees for support. According to Swartz and Miller, it is known among the english colonists in the West Indies by the name of " the Water-Lemon :" Jacquin and Browne say by that of " the Honeysuckle;" the latter attributing the former appellation to maliformis, a closely allied species. Among the french colonists the fruit is included in the denomination of " Pommes de Lianes." This is nearly of the form and size of a smallish Lemon, yellow spotted with white, having a soft leathery rind, enclosing a mass of separate brown flattish cordate cohesive seeds, each coated by a thick pulpy membrane constituting the esculent portion of the fruit, much as the case is with the Pomegranate. The pulp is watery and sweetish, of a pleasant taste, for the sake of which .the fruit is eaten, as well as medicinally in fevers. When the rind is broken at the top, the eatable contents are obtained at once by a slight compression. The flowers are both fragrant and beautiful ; the young foliage is of a bright tender green, gradually darkening till nearly black, in which it re- .sembles, as well as slightly in shape, that of the Laurel. The way to grow the present, and indeed all the tropical Climbers, is to plant them in a border of earth formed round the inside of the bark-bed of the stove, and parted off from the tan by thick boarding down to the bottom of the bed : the whole to be backed by trellis-work for them to climb on. In this way they thrive in great luxuriance, and are made to form a bower, some part or other of which is in bloom nearly the year through. Propagated without difficulty by layers and cuttings. Our drawing was made at the Comtesse de Vaudes's, Bayswater.

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