You may have never seen a flower as intricately beautiful as the Passion flower. Its delicate floral appearance and delectable fruits make it a garden favorite for folk in Central America. If you didn’t figure it out yet, this is the same Passion flower that bears the Passion fruit!
The passion flower has many uses aside from being a beautiful ornamental. It is used as a food flavoring and traditional medicine for some cultures. Aside from its history and uses, the floral colors also pose an importance to its overall meaning and symbolism.
For example, a white, yellow, or orange passion flower each means purity, curiosity, and strong beliefs. Meanwhile, a red and blue passion flower symbolizes passion and a calm existence. Lastly, a pink and purple passion flower represents compassion and religiosity.
History of the Passion Flower
The Passion flower was first defined as a showy flower with edible fruits in 1633. Long before it was defined in botany and introduced to European countries, it was actually first discovered in Peru in 1569 by a Spanish doctor.
The flower belongs to the genus Passiflora of the family Passifloraceae and has around 500 spectacular species. It is native to the regions of Central America and South America and is popularly cultivated as an ornamental vine or fruit tree in Latin America.
The passion flower was first introduced to Europe when Mexican augustinian friar Emmanuel de Villegas brought the flowers from Mexico during his Christian missionaries. The parts of the flower feature five anthers, five petals and five sepals that grow into a floral round shape. The corona filaments grow in a ring above the petals and sepals that receives pollen that initiates fertilization.
The Latin genus derives from the meaning flower of passion. The flower can also be called the common passion flower or passionflower (yup, one word), Maypop (Passiflora incarnata), or Apricot vine because of how the fruit slightly resembles an apricot.
In the new world, most species today have a specific focus on registered trademarks of newer varieties thanks to advanced plant sciences. Other major species of this genus include the yellow passionflower (Passiflora lutea) and giant granadilla (Passiflora quadrangularis).
Symbolism of the Passion Bloom
In the language of flowers, the passion flower is a symbolic offering for someone in preparation for the religious sacrament. This religious sacrament is none other than the death of Christ. With the flowers’ intricate design, every part of it has a deep symbol associated with Christ.
The passion fruit itself is symbolic of Christ’s resurrection. Its multiple tendrils symbolize the lashes during his scourging, the filaments make up the crown of thorns on His head, the stigma represents the nails hammered down on His hands and feet, and the anthers appear as the five wounds!
Aside from this, the red-purple stain on the flower denotes Christ’s blood while the ovary columns appear as the pillar of the cross. According to Christian belief, these flowers only stay in bloom for three days and are symbolic of the three days it was said for Jesus Christ to rise again.
Meaning of the Passion Blossom
The passion flower meaning stands for a new life and a fresh start. Aside from symbolizing the Passion of Christ, it also sends the message that trusting in the promise of tomorrow will leave your heart in peace. Truly warming and reassuring for the heart and soul.
What does a White Passion Flower Mean?
A white maypop gives the meaning of purity and brightness. Take one good look at these flowers in bloom and you will see how their petals stand out in a sea of green leaves.
What does a Red Passion Blossom Symbolize?
Maypops with luscious red petals are symbolic of Holy love and passion. Besides this, it also symbolizes love and affection.
What does a Blue Passion Flower Mean?
A blue passion flower is beautiful like the sea. Because of this, a flower of this color represents a calm existence and a peaceful state of mind.
What does a Pink Passion Bloom Indicate?
One’s faith is indicated by the presence of pink passionflowers. It also reflects strong compassion.
What does a Purple Passion Floret Represent?
Just like the deep purple colors seen in priests, a purple passionflower is symbolic of religiosity and devotion to Christ.
What does a Yellow Passion Flower Symbolize?
The haziness of the color of this flower symbolizes being superstitious and mysterious. It also indicates one’s curiosity.
What does an Orange Passion Bloom Mean?
These orange passion flowers give the symbolic meaning of strong beliefs and virtues. It is a reminder of life values and daily principles.
What is the Cultural Significance of a Maypop Flower?
The Victorian times believed that the Passion flowers were symbolic of one’s wealth and social prestige. Surprisingly, Queen Victoria gave another trendy symbolism for this flower. Upon the death of Abraham Lincoln, Queen Victoria arranged a wreath made of passion flowers to offer at his funeral. It is kind of the complete opposite of what the other folks say!
Traveling to the state of Tennessee in the U.S.A, the flowers are also honored in a special way. In 1973, the state school children of Tennessee voted for the passionflower as the official state flower!
What is the Biblical Significance of the Passion Flower?
The passion flowers take its main symbolism and historical beliefs from the bible and the gospel story of Christian faith. Quite surprisingly, the flower’s name also comes from Roman Catholic priests. Each part of the flower are symbols gave this flower its biblical meaning.
These flowers are known as old Christian flower symbols that are said to represent the Passion of Christ or death of Jesus and how Jesus suffered on the cross. According to specific historical documentation in history, the five petals and five sepals represent the ten faithful apostles. Meanwhile, the three stigmas represent the three nails that held Jesus to the cross.
The five anthers were also symbolic of the five wounds Jesus while the corona filaments represent the crown of thorns that Jesus wore during His crucifixion. In a religious sense, such symbols speak of how Jesus saved mankind from their sins. And although there were no printed catechisms about this, the visual means of showing His love for mankind were spread by the ten apostles in the Holy Gospel.
What is the Spiritual Influence of a Maypop Blossom?
A passion flower imparts a very positive impact spiritually. It promotes the calmness of one’s mental, physical, and emotional stresses and triggers serenity in the environment. Additionally, it also cleanses the mind and body to help start a refreshing day.
What does a Passion Flower Floral Tattoo Symbolize?
Choosing a Maypop floral tattoo symbolizes sacrifice and strength. Just like Christ, bearing this flower tattoo indicates an undying love and new beginnings.
Uses of Passion Flowers
Passion flowers are commonly cultivated as an ornamental vine in gardens or fruiting trees for the harvest. Its fresh floral extracts are used as a flavoring for food and beverage. Although the folks of the Native Americans have more use for this plant apart from being a garden decor or food.
Traditional medicine practices of Native Americans claim that a poultice made from the flowers can be used to treat bruises or that fresh fruit juice can be used to treat eye ailments. Dried fruits and flower tops were also used as a sedative remedy to reduce body pains. In earlier uses, the plant was used as a remedy for mental struggles such as anxiety, insomnia, stress, delirium, and attentive-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Dependency on vices such as alcohol and drugs can also be controlled by using the flower as a treatment. A word of caution that it’s a must to always consult a medical professional before using this plant or any part of it for medical purposes.