Passion fruits (passiflora edulis) is one of the most expensive and not common fruit on market. Its highly nutritious and mainly produced for juice processing.
Passiflora edulis, commonly known as passion fruit, is a vine species of passion flower native to southern Brazil through Paraguay and northern Argentina. It is cultivated commercially in tropical and subtropical areas for its sweet, seedy fruit.
Passion fruits are heavy feeders and sensitive to water logging therefore require deep, well drained fertile soils.
It grows best at PH 5.5-7. Needs more of Nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium and magnesium plus organic matter. (Its prudent that you test the soil to be sure about the availability of these nutrients and know what to add)
Passion fruits need to be planted in an open place direct sunlight.
Remove all trees and bushes, Do some ploughing to remove the unwanted vegetation.
Make the holes: Holes should be 2ft wide and 2ft deep.
After making the holes, mix the top soil with half a basin of decomposed manure and fill back the hole.
Make the holes at least 2weeks prior to planting
This should be 7x7ft at least for the purple variety.
Meaning we shall make over 700holes in one Acre.
You can choose to buy ready seedlings at 1500Ushs each or make your own nursery bed.
At planting, get your seedlings, apply some 50gms of DAP in the hole then put your seedling and cover well.
Transplant during cool hours of the day to minimize transpiration shock.
You can as well use farm yard manure like cow dung
Ensure that you Irrigate in times of no rain to avoid water stress, stunted growth and drying if the foliage.
Keep enough moisture in the soil however don’t over irrigate as you may cause logging which is not good.
You can use 10litre bottles and put a needle hole on them for dripping.
It’s best to irrigate in the evening when it’s cool.
With irrigation ,passion fruits can yield all year round.
2. Fertilizer Application
Since passion fruits are heavy feeders, during the growing season they require a lot of nutrients like NPK and CAN and others.
Top dress with NPK 50gms per plant after the first 30days
Then after 5months ,apply 50gms of NPK +CAN mixed together every month. Foliar fertilizers are to be appalled every after 2weeks with high Nitrogen in the Vegetative phase of 1-4months and high potassium in the production stage.
You can as well keep adding manure around the plant at least 1ft from the plant vine.
Always make sure the garden is weed free to avoid nutrient competition and deficiency.
You can use herbicides or hand weeding.
This is a very important practice In the life of passion fruits, make sure you prune to allow sunlight and air to filter through the vine to help ripen the fruit.
Prune the dead and old branches that have already born fruit.
It also allows new growth hence more flowering and fruiting.
If you don’t prune ,the garden will be so dark ,hard to identify fruits and can easily attract snakes to hide in as they eat the fruits
Young vines are trained to grow along the wire support, Tie a thin rope near the base of the vines and move it around to the top.
Then you can construct a Net bed of about 6-7ft high and allow the vines to grow and spread.
6. Pest Management and Control
Passion fruits if not monitored can easily be attacked by pests like thrips, root knot nematodes, mites and mealy bugs.
Then also they get fungal diseases which will require u to apply good fungicides
You can do spraying using recommended pesticides, removing of infected plants, plant resistant varieties, weeding and other cultural practices to control pests.
7. Harvesting and Marketing
From one acre of passion fruits if well managed and u have water for irrigation, you can harvest 2-3sacks a week.
You start harvesting at 6momths with good practices, then keep harvesting for over 17months
You can sell them locally to friends and family or local markets
Imagine currently 4fruits are 1000shs so with just a small plot of land ,you can earn serious money from these fruits.
If each bag is 500,000 (currently its 700,000) you can make 1.5m a week from one acre.
A month 6M, A year you can make 72M.
However this doesn’t come on a silver plata, passion fruits need a lot of Attention and Supervision to easily monitor any challenge, the investment is also not small.