Top 15 Steps to Boost Passion Fruit Yield: How to Increase Passion Fruit Production, Quality, and Size

Passion fruit, also known as “granadilla” (Passiflora edulisSims), is an exotic fruit and belongs to the “Passifloraceae” family. Passion fruit vines need help, and they usually climb a trellis or other strong structures, so it is essential to plan when choosing their location. A passion fruit vine will grow best in slightly acidic soil. Let’s check out the top 15 steps to boost passion fruit yield below.

Steps to Boost Passion Fruit Yield
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Top 15 steps to boost passion fruit yield

Step 1: Choosing the right passion fruit plant 

  • Yellow passion fruit – It is a sweet, acidic, and tropical fruit. Yellow fruit varieties give higher yields at lower altitudes due to relatively warmer temperatures.  
  • Purple Passion fruit – The taste and aroma of purple fruit are more than that of yellow fruit. It is also less acidic. 
  • Kaveri Hybrid Passion Fruit – This is a high-yielding variety, and each fruit weighs 85-110 grams. The fruits are purple, and the quality of the fruit is comparable to the purple variety. 

Of the many varieties, the purple passion fruit, the yellow passion fruit, and the Kaveri hybrid passion fruit (purple x yellow) are of commercial importance. 

Step 2: Site selection for passion fruit growth

Passion fruit vines will grow quite long and may need help for the best results. The ideal place for growing vines is loose, fertile soil with at least 8 hours of sunlight per day. This soil should have a lot of organic matter for good drainage and strong root growth. A southern exposure or dappled shade is preferred, but the vines will withstand the full sun if protected from the wind. However, growing passion fruit vines in hot areas should be avoided as it can damage them.

Step 3: Climate and soil requirements for increasing fruit yield  

Yellow passion fruits are suitable for tropical regions, while purple passion fruits require sub-tropical conditions. It grows to an altitude of 2100 meters, and the rainfall is 100 to 250 centimeters. The ideal temperature is 20 ºC to 30 ºC to get the best yield. The cool temperatures in purple passion fruits are conducive to the onset of flowering and fruit set (18-23 ºC) and the high temperature and quality required to promote juice production.

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Passion Fruit
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Yellow passion fruit grows in low tropical conditions. Low temperatures affect plant growth, flowering, and tree flowering. Fruits thrive in light sandy loam to heavy loam soils with a pH range of 6 to 7.5. Soil should be avoided without the accumulation of water and drainage. Passion fruit vines are a heavy food that requires fertile soil rich in organic matter to thrive. 

Step 4: Follow some steps to get higher yields

  • Check soil pH ratio. Fruits require soil with a pH ratio of 6 to 7.5. 
  • The lack of pollinators could be another reason. The plant needs pollinators like bees; otherwise, the plant will not bear fruit. The only cure for this problem is to help pollinate the plant by hand. It is advisable to keep bee-loving plants close to passion fruit plants in such cases. 
  • Water the plant well. Due to lack of water, the plant does not flower and does not bear fruit. 
  • Plants need to be pruned immediately after harvesting. Remove old and unnecessary branches. 
  • The plant needs rain. But heavy rains will cause the flower to disintegrate, so the plant will not bear any fruit. 
  • If the area is affected by high winds, the plant’s tolerance will also be affected. 
  • If you live in a low-temperature area, wait for the cold to subside. Colds can affect plant flowering and fruiting delays. 
  • Make sure the insects are not attacking the plant. You can use neem oil emulsion to control pest trouble. 

Step 5: Select the propagation method of Passion fruit 

It is usually propagated by cutting. However, seeds are also used as propagating material despite the genetic variation. Softwood grafting is promising in realizing the benefits of rootstock. The yellow passion fruit, which tolerates soil-borne diseases, is the most common rootstock of the purple passion fruit. 

Step 6: Planting tips for better fruit production

Spring is the best time to plant passion fruit vines. Before planting, prepare your soil by applying chicken manure and compost in an area one to two meters wide. Mulch around the plant base with sugarcane, bark chips, or pea straw, but do not let it form around the stem. 

Step 7: Plant spacing for improving crop yield 

The passion fruits are vigorous growers. A vine can grow up to 30 to 40 feet tall. Train the vines to avoid tangling the stems of different plants. Training vines on trails will make harvesting easier. 

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Passion Fruit Farming
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Step 8: Flowering and fruiting stage improve productivity

Once the passion fruit reaches the age of 12-13 months, it will continue to bloom throughout its life. As other flowers turn into fruits, other flowers are formed. It will continue for 3-4 years when its productivity will start declining. The fruiting phase will start from 12 or 13 months and continue for 3-5 years. As the plant ages, it will increase the number of fruits until it reaches its peak in the 4th year. Then, it will start to reduce the number of fruits produced. 

Step 9: Fertilizer management for healthy plant growth

Passion fruit vines provide heavy food, which means they need plenty of fertilizer to ensure healthy growth during their growing season. Unfortunately, this plant is also straightforward to fertilize, so often, small doses work best, rather than large ones, which can quickly burn or kill your vines. A balanced 10-10-10 or similar all-purpose formula should be applied every three weeks. But, again, be careful when fertilizing because the fruit vines are susceptible to salt buildup in their soil.

Measure the rate of transpiration from the evapotranspiration bucket. It is essential to read the fertilizer label you use and follow the instructions on how often and how often to feed your vines. The nutritional requirements of the passion fruit depend on the age and stage of development, viz., Vegetative growth, plant coming in bearing, and total production stage. N 150, P 100, and K 200 kg/hectare is the approximate nutrient requirement of passion fruit. Nutrients should be distributed after harvesting. 

Organic manures are essential for strong and productive plants with regular and maximum yields. Oil cake is also applied in some areas. 10 kg FYM per vine is recommended during the first year of planting and 15 kg FYM per vine from the second year. A mixture of FYM and vermicompost in the ratio of 4: 1 or 3: 1 and oil cake gives excellent results, but most farmers are not applying it due to the limited availability of vermicompost. Manure should be used in February-March. 

Nutrient management depends on the age and stage of growth of the vines. Organic manures should be added more for better fruit production. Keep the soil evenly moist to produce the best fruit. If the soil dries out, the fruit will shrink and drop. Passion fruit is a heavy feeder. Too much nitrogen will result in reduced leaf growth and fruit set.

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Passion Fruit Farm
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Step 10: Plant care tips for getting more yield

  • Feeding is essential – Passionfruit needs chicken manure, blood and bone, and potash. Liquid potash is ideal. Water during flowering and fruit production is also necessary. 
  • Prune in spring – Cut one or two key stems to about one-third, trim the lateral stems, and cut out some dense growth. It will allow better air circulation and fruit growth in the next season. Vines need to be replaced every five years, as they become hard and unproductive. 
  • Control pests and diseases – Avoid pests and diseases as major infections can reduce the flower or fruit drop. Passionfruit vine hopper, also called fluffy bum because of its youth, can attack vines and cause fruit or flower to drop. They can be squashed or closed. Juvenile fluffy booms can be treated with garden sprays such as pyrethrum-based insecticide (apply according to label instructions). Vines can also be attacked with a scale. Use horticultural spray oil to deal with scale. 

Step 11: Passion fruit and flower drop causes and control

Premature fruit drop can be due to one of the following reasons. Irregular watering can cause the fruit to fall off because when the fruits are near maturity, the ripe fruits need more water. Fruits dry out and fall off as a result of water stress. Continuous irrigation and increasing organic matter in the soil can significantly improve water availability for vines. Other possible causes include fungal diseases, nutrient deficiency, and loss of fruit flies and mites.

If you have planted the vine in the proper position and you are not getting flowers once, it is possible that it will not get the required nutrients. Try to feed with liquid plant food in September and autumn after a harvest. A common complaint of passion fruit growers is lack of fruit. Many factors can be blamed, but poor pollination is the most common. The essential function of bees can be affected by changes in the weather, such as constant, heavy rainfall and temperature fluctuations. Excessive fertilization can also increase your vines but without flowers and fruits. 

Step 12: Training and pruning the Passion fruit vines for more yield

Training is essential in managing production and supporting the vine during its economic life. Poor and inadequate construction of the trellis can lead to bending and damage the vines. The passion fruit influences the current season’s growth and encourages systematic pruning of vines of new growth that results in regular and high fruit production. Passion fruit vines should be trained on a strong trellis or fence to hold the vine’s weight without bending too far, leading to breakage of branches and possible damage to the plant.

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Passion Fruit
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As with most plants, it is essential to prune passion fruit vines regularly to promote growth and avoid overcrowding or other problems such as crossing branches or circulating air around plants. Remove any dead wood on the lower half of the vine after it has wilted and dried, and remove any diseased wood near these areas. After flowering, cut each existing branch into more than 6-8 buds to encourage new growth and more flowers next year. 

When the plant is new, the lateral branches that come from the main stem should be removed to the surface of the wire. The two-sided branches coming from the main stem should then bend around the upper wire of your structure and force them to grow in opposite directions. Once the side branches have spread, the lateral branches can come out of them and hang down loosely. 

Step 13: The leaves of the vines turn yellow (chlorosis)

It may be a sign that your vines have been infected with the passion fruit woodiness virus. It can be caused by magnesium deficiency, nitrogen deficiency on sandy soils, or extremely cold weather combined with low humidity. Due to the lack of nutrients, vines turn yellow differently depending on the stage of leaf development. For example, sulfur (S) or copper deficiency is always evident if your new leaves have yellow veins. However, if the yellowing affects the area between the veins, it indicates insufficient iron (Fe) or Molybdenum (Mo) deficiency. 

Yellowing of old leaves, especially between the veins, is a sign of magnesium deficiency. A fertilizer rich in magnesium (Mg) is a suitable treatment for this problem. On the hand, yellowing the veins in old leaves is a sure sign of nitrogen deficiency and should be corrected accordingly. There are situations where both the old and new leaves of your favorite fruit vines turn yellow. The best fertilizer for passion fruit vines is; 

  • Granulated fertilizer 
  • Urea
  • Potassium sulfate
  • Diammonium phosphate
  • Organic fertilizers like manure and vegetable compost

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Passion Fruit Yield
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These are all widely used fertilizers, so you should have no problem getting them. However, be aware that each will be applied to different stages of the fruit tree’s life. Feed your passion fruit vine well with lemon or chicken manure in water twice a year in spring and autumn. Make sure you spread the fertilizer over the entire root system. Avoid over-feeding or over-fertilizing with nitrogen fertilizers, as this will promote leaf growth at the expense of flowers and fruits.

Step 14: Control shriveled fruits to boost crop yield

Shriveled fruits are common for passion fruits, especially ripe ones when they fall to the ground. But, if this happens earlier, it could be due to fruit fly damage, sucking insect damage, poor pollination, lack of boron, and insufficient irrigation when the heavy crop is set. Ensure your vines are provided with the proper nutrients for maximum and full growth, free from pests and diseases. 

Step 15: Harvesting tips for getting more yield 

Flowers grow alone in the leaf axils on the last parts of the new growth. The two main fruiting seasons are August-December and March-May. Fruits should be harvested along the stem. Economic production begins 1-2 years after planting healthy vines with about 150-180 fruits per year. Prune fruits are full size and colorful – when light wrinkles appear; they are in their best condition, so pick fruits when the skin starts wrinkling.


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