There are several passion fruit varieties grown and traded in the world. The most common is the purple and yellow varieties.
Without wasting time, let’s take a look at these passion varieties starting with the most popular and widespread, to the least popular.
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The Purple Passion Fruit Varieties
The purple passion is the most popular and widespread in the whole world. In fact, about 80% of the total world’s passion fruit production is of the purple variety.
People love the purple passion variety because of its strong taste and flavor. They readily eat it fresh (without processing) or process it into juice and fruit pulp.
If you are a farmer or trader, you can never go wrong if you focus on the purple variety.
The Purple passion variety is a tropical plant. It is native to the tropical regions of South America. produce higher yields better at high altitudes (cool temperatures).
The variety is suitable for areas with an altitude of 1100 to 2500m above sea level.
Related: Passion fruit production seasons
Qualities of the purple passion
- The fruit has a rich-aromatic flavor
- Weighs approximately 35-50 grams
- Round in shape
- Diameter of the purple passion fruit variety is approximately 5 cm
- As the fruit approaches maturity and ripening, it turns from green to deep purple color.
- The purple passion-variety has an average juice content of between 30-35%.
The purple variety has the best flavor among all passion varieties that’s is why it is highly desired by the markets.
Other Variants of the purple passion fruit
Known to be the tastiest of all the Passionfruit varieties, the pulp varies in color from bright yellow to pumpkin color and has many small, hard, black, seeds. The inside wall of the Misty Gem is white. The flavor is refreshing, guava-like and tangy.
blackish in color and very sweet.
A hybrid passionfruit that is vigorous and more tropical than the black.
Also known as Nelly Kelly–a purple selection of mild, sweet flavor, grown in Australia and Hawaii.
Common Purple the form growing naturalized in Hawaii; thick-skinned, with small seed cavity, but of fine flavor and low acidity.
Pratt Hybrid apparently a natural cross between the ‘Common Purple’ and a yellow strain; subject to rot, but juice is of fine color and flavor, low in acid.
Waimanalo Selection consists of 4 strains: ‘C-54’, ‘C-77’, ‘C-80’, of similar size, shape, color and very good flavor, and ‘C-39’ as pollinator.
The Yellow Passion Fruit Varieties
The yellow cultivar is more vigorous vine than the purple passion.
It is tolerant to harsh climatic conditions, soil borne diseases and pest. This hardy ability makes it ideal for use as a rootstock for the purple passion variety.
The yellow passion fruit is suitable for low altitudes such as coastal lowlands.
The fruit is bigger with a diameter of 5-7 cm, relatively acidic and used for juice extraction.
Produces higher yields at lower elevations due to relatively warm temperatures.
The fruit is bigger than the purple variety, with a weight of 60 – 65 grams per fruit.
The fruits are round in shape with yellow spots and turns from green to golden yellow when ripe.
Other Yellow passion cultivars found in specific areas around the world.
‘Yee Selection’–yellow, round, very attractive, highly disease-resistant, but fruit has thick rind and low yield of juice which is of very good flavor.
‘University Round Selection’–Hawaiian crosses of ‘Waimanalo’ and ‘Yee’–fruit smaller than ‘Yee’; not as attractive but yields 10% more juice of very good flavor.
‘Sevcik Selection’–a golden form of the yellow selected in Hawaii; a heavy bearer, but subject to brown rot and the juice has a peculiar woody flavor.
‘Kapoho Selection’–a cross of ‘Sevcik’ and other yellow strains in Hawaii. A heavy bearer of large fruits but subject to brown rot; many fruits contain little or no pulp and the juice has the off-flavor of ‘Sevcik.’
‘University Selection No. B-74’–a
Hawaiian hybrid between ‘Pratt’ and ‘C-77’, usually yellow, occasionally with red tinges; resembles ‘Waimanalo’; has good juice yield and very good flavor.
KARI Passion Fruit Varieties
A few years ago Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI), bred a few more passion fruit varieties. These varieties possess superior qualities and plant resistances than their conventional counterparts.
The KARI passion fruit varieties are bigger, sweeter, juicier, and more tolerant of pest and diseases.
The commercial passion breeds developed by KARI are:
- KPF passion variety.
Is the sweetest among KPF variety and preferred for fresh market
- Planted directly from seeds in a nursery without grafting.
- Flowers after 10 months of transplanting.
- Reaches maturity in the 12th – the 14th month of transplanting.
- Does well in low to mid altitudes – 0 – 1,500 meters above sea level.
- Seedlings are ready for transplanting 6 – 8 weeks after potting.
- Is tolerant to drought and fusarium wilts.
- Yield under good agronomic practices is 500 – 1000kgs per acre per week.
- KPF11 passion fruit variety – Yields much higher than KPF4
Has a slightly sour taste and mainly produced for juice processing.
- Planting: Planted directly from seeds in a nursery.
- Maturity: Flowers in the 10 month after transplanting; reaches maturity in 12th – a 14th month after transplanting
Altitude: Does well in low to mid altitudes – 0 – 1,500 meters above sea level
Soil: Requires #N; #P; #K; good fertilizers are DAP, TSP, SSP and N:P:K +Ca 17:17:17 + 2
Seedlings: Ready for transplanting 6 – 8 weeks after potting; good seeds are one to one and half feet tall, vigorously growing, free from pest and diseases.
Is tolerant to drought and Fusarium wilts.
Yield: 700 – 1,400 Kg per acre per week under good agronomic practices
- KPF12 passion fruit Variety
This variety has similar qualities as the KPF 11 variety.
Other Passion Fruit breeds not classified as yellow or purple passion
Sweet passion fruit
Sweet passion variety is one of the best tasting passion fruit in the world. The hard shelled
orange-yellow fruit is of excellent quality and has a white aromatic pulp.
Production begins in 2 to 3 years. You can easily recognize the vine by their heart shaped leaves. Prefers sheltered conditions.
Frost tender when young.
It prefers cooler conditions for optimum and elevations of above 1500m.
The fruit is of excellent flavor and turns from blue to orange-brown at the time of ripening. The whitish, aromatic pulp is enclosed in a hard shell, which can stand transportation without damage.
Giant passion fruit breed
Giant green to yellow passion fruit reaching over one foot in diameter. Pulp is not as flavorful as the common passion fruit, but still tasty and often eaten or used in drinks.
It requires tropical climate and grows best from 1700m above sea level.
It grows to a length of 30m and fruits turn from green to yellow when mature. Fruits are eaten fresh and appearance resembles a vegetable marrow.
The banana passion fruit cultivar
Banana passionfruit is the fruit of several plants in the genus Passiflora, and is therefore related to the passion fruit.
They look somewhat like a straight, small banana with rounded ends.
Grows at higher elevations, colder conditions above 1500mm above sea level. It also has an edible pulp.
Banana passionfruit variety is used as rootstock for grafting the passionfruit varieties more commonly grown for food, especially in climates too cool for productive passionfruit growing.
Regrowth from beneath the graft is one means of its outbreak as a weed, so growers should be vigilant for sprouting low on the main stem or from around the base of the plant, and should pull up and discard the plant when (typically after 6–9 years) the grafted passionfruit is no longer productive.
You’ve had a glimpse the most popular passion fruit varieties grown across the world. I believe I’ve helped you decide the passion variety that meets your needs.
Please remember the variety you choose to grow or trade should be guided by your market. It beats logic to engage in a variety that nobody wants or needs.
Finally: I hope I haven’t left out any passion fruit variety? In case you find one any, let me know in the comments.