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Zone 7a and having issues this winter.

Posted by jessmohring 7a / Delaware (My Page) on
Tue, Dec 1, 09 at 11:08

Hello all! My boyfriend and I purchased a beautiful passion flower plant about seven months ago, and haven't had any issues with it until now. We had it outside in a hanging pot all spring through early fall, then once the weather began to drop around 50 degrees farenheit, we decided to bring it inside. It's in a second floor "foyer" area, in the corner between two windows. It thrived there at first, then I suspect it got too cold, as the leaves began to severely droop (it certainly didn't need any water), turn yellow, and drop.

So we brought it further indoors, where it continued to suffer. We haven't brought her completely back, but there is still a good half of the plant that is producing new growth (the runners and leaves). Most of the other leaves have already dropped, or are yellowed. If they ARE green, they're very delicate/droopy, almost like soft velvet to the touch. The living runners are either fine, or droopy as well, where as the dead runners are black and brittle. Like I said, about 90% of the plant is obviously still alive.

We have put our potted passion flower (which is at a good size, now outgrowing it's 8" pot) back out into the foyer area, where it seems to do best. We love this plant, and it does SO WELL here in the spring and summer, we just need some advice on winterizing her. I read some past posts of similar topics and they didn't offer much help. We have not fed this plant since we got it, I was waiting until it got a little more stable to do that. I just need some advice guys, if you don't mind. Please help.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Zone 7a and having issues this winter.

I'm also in 7a and grow a wide variety of passifloras. Do you know what variety you have? If it's a cold hardy variety you can just allow it to go dormant and not worry about it until spring. I keep most of mine in a heated greenhouse but used to keep them inside under HID lights. They don't like the change of climate and will suffer from shock. I used to cut my vines way back when I brought them in and only left about 6" of stems. That way the new growth will be more acclimated to the indoor conditions. You can also root some of the vines you cut off. I cut back on the amount of water and fertilizer they get while inside but I do mist them. You might even consider running a humidifer. Not only is the low humidity bad for the plant it promotes insect infestations, especially things like spider mites and mealy bugs. A good grow light helps. Even a window with a good exposure isn't usually sufficient. You should have been feeding it over the summer. I wouldn't feed it now. I never fertilize a stressed plant but you might want to give it some Superthrive and/or B1 to help with shock. Once it's healthy again you can give it some food. Good luck.

RE: Zone 7a and having issues this winter.

Thank you very much for your reply, Karyn! I appreciate it. I do not know what type I have; the flowers have brilliant blue pistal-like structures with deep purple beneath them on the petals, and the petals are an off-white to yellow in color. I'm sure this info doesn't help much, but I do recall on the insert the plant came with, it said it was good down to 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
It has a lot of new growth since the last post, and I'm going to cut back much of the dormant stems, but leave the new growth. It is doing better, and I'll be investing in some Superthive soon; once I recover from the holidays!
Again, I appreciate your response! It's been very helpful. I don't want to lose this plant. Thanks again!

- Jess

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