Maypop - Passiflora incarnata

Maypop - Passiflora incarnata

Greeted By Beauty

Maypops aren't always easy to find. You generally won't find them in controlled areas, in manicured gardens, or in landscaping, instead you most often find them twining through abandoned areas, up thorns and thistle, through fencerows and untended lots. But if you look hard enough, they will greet you with the most awe inspiring beauty.

"The art of life is more like navigation than warfare, for what is important is to understand the winds, the tides, the currents, the seasons, and the principles of growth and decay, so that one's actions may use them and not fight them."

The flowers of Maypop are simply art, and art of the highest order, for they are not solidified in a museum, they are not produced for the masses, and they have nothing to do with money. Maypop flowers are temporary, there to be seen for a short time by those who would seek them out. Art has unfortunately become largely artifice, an illusion of artificiality, like a picture of this beautiful flower or the words that describe it. Even music is rarely sung to each other, instead being recorded on a permanent medium. True art, like the Maypop is an impermanent experience that subtly draws us into that mysterious and ever-present metaphysical background of everything.

"Mystical knowledge can never be obtained just by observation, but only by full participation with one's whole being."


Maypop is a marvelous perennial vine that gives so much. Its flowers are not only beautiful but edible, medicinal and delicious. The leaves are edible raw or cooked, and are often dried and also used for medicine. The vine also produces copious amounts of egg like fruits that have a delicious seedy interior when fully ripe. When you find or grow a Maypop vine you will inevitably step on this fruit which will produce a loud pop. It is strange though, that Maypop does not produce fruit in May...

There is also something more about this flower that is still playing hide and seek, something almost psychedelic. Simply watch a bumble bee as is bathes in this flower, and you will notice the effect on this insect. It’s as if it is intoxicated by beauty, and pays no attention to its surroundings, or even a probing finger.


Our northern Maypop is related to the Passion Fruit of tropical climates. In Ecuador they make a marvelous drink called 'Maracuya' out of the fruit. A similar drink can be made from our northern Maypop.

Passion Juice

When the fruit is yellow and shriveled, pop them open and scoop out the inner goodness. Run through a strainer, or blend slowly with some water to separate the seed from the pulp. Remove the seeds and then simply add some sugar and water to achieve desired potency and sweetness.