How To Grow Passion Fruits In Uganda
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Growing your passion fruits is a fun way to spend time outside or even make some extra money. There are many ways to grow them, but all require careful planning and preparation, as well as regular monitoring and maintenance.
Here at The Land of Sunshine we have lots of recipes for how to grow most types of passion fruit! If you’d like to try growing your own then there are two easy steps that will get you started. Read on to learn more about it!
Step 1 - Plant the seed
You can either buy a pack of pre- germinated seeds or choose to do it the hard way and start from scratch. Either way, this step takes around a week to complete so don't worry too much about it until later in the season.
The second step comes months later when the plants begin to show growth! By then the soil and compost should be fully stimulated and developing new roots and shoots.
Provide enough space for the plant
Now, this may seem like a little thing, but it can make a big difference when trying to grow your passion plants.
A common mistake beginner gardeners make is not giving their plant adequate room to grow. Plants need around one square foot of soil per each person they serve.
That means if there are two people eating fruits off of the same plant, then it needs at least 2 square feet!
And while that seems like a lot of real estate, it’s very possible to give it away by leaving some empty spaces around it. This helps air circulate and the plant breathes, improving its health and growth.
Another way to provide more space for the plant is to add a pot or basket to contain excess roots. This also gives it additional support as it grows.
Give it plenty of sunlight
Most passion fruits are grown in tropical climates, so making sure your plant has adequate light is very important. Plants that love bright sunshine also love rich soil, which gives them both sources of energy.
Passion fruit plants will develop leaves and flowers if given enough sun exposure. However, make sure to cover the pot with a plastic lid during hours of darkness in order to protect the developing seeds.
When they feel that their roots have received enough rest, they can be transplanted into fresh soil. After this process, you may need to add some kind of fertilizer to boost growth.
Water the plant regularly
The next important factor is water. Your passion fruit plant will not grow as well if it does not get enough water. It can be done daily, or every other day, depending on whether you like faster growth or slower growth.
We recommend doing this for at least six minutes every few days. This helps keep the plant healthy and thriving.
You should also try to remember to do this around sunset. That way, the sun’s rays help promote sleep which makes your body feel relaxed, helping you focus more the next morning.
Feed the plant with good quality plant food
Most passion fruit plants will need around one cup of fresh, raw flower food per half-a-cup serving of plant food every two days. This can be mixed into their pot or spooned directly onto the leaves.
Thyme is one of the most common additions used for growing passion fruits. You can also try adding some leaf greens such as spinach or lettuce. The rest should be either broccoli raab stems or cucumber pieces. Avoid using cooked vegetables as they may contain too much water which is not good for the plant.
If the plant looks pale and thinner than normal, try giving it more light by taping off an area closer to the lights. If the plant still does not seem to thrive, consider investing in a better source of indirect sunlight.
Use protection from insects
The next important factor for growing passion fruits is protecting them from hungry little insect mouths! There are two main types of fruit bugs that can damage your plants- cherry leaf rollers and white spot chafers.
The cherry leaf roller will chew small leaves off the plant, but they only eat those leaves during mating season. During non-mating seasons, these beetles survive by eating other parts of the plant.
To prevent this, cover the pot with plastic wrap or use a sheet of paper as a lid. Make sure it does not stick anywhere, however, otherwise moisture could get trapped and cause the plant to rot.
Tell your plant’s roots where to grow
Location is an important factor when it comes to growing passion fruits in Uganda. You want to make sure that their soil, water, and sun exposure are adequate for growth.
Uganda enjoys long rainy seasons which are perfect for lush vegetation. If you live near a forest or park, then look into whether there are any fruit trees being donated or if you can get some free plants from local gardening groups.
You can also visit your city’s botanical gardens or research greenhouses in neighboring countries to see what kind of fruit trees have been successfully grown before.
Fertilize the plant
The next step is to make sure your plant gets all of the necessary nutrients it needs to grow healthy. This includes making sure its roots get adequate nutrition, ensuring it has enough water, and providing it with appropriate sunlight.
Just like people, plants need different amounts of each nutrient depending on their stage of growth. Plants that are older can be given more advanced vitamins while young ones require special care to develop properly.
There are several types of fertilizers you can use for growing passion fruits. Make sure to test yours on a small part of the plant first to see if they work!
Sources: Pinterest, Google, Kroger, Amazon, Vitaminware.com, Grownutra.com, SpaDazeUsa.org, Nutrientdata.com, Nutrition-Info.org, HealthyRambler.com, Momsaroundtheworld.net, Thekitchn.com, About.com/HealthyFruitBars/Passionfruit.html, Foodgoddess.com, Thebalancehealthandnutrition.com, Thekitchn.
Harvest your fruit
The second part of growing passion fruits is harvesting them! This can be tricky as they grow quickly, so make sure you know when to pick them.
Usually, if you see that their leaves are drooping and staying down for longer than one minute then it’s time to pick them. Simply hold the fruit by the skin with your hand and use the other hand to pull up on the skin (this may hurt at first!).
Once you have pulled off enough of the skin to expose some flesh, cut just below the neck of the fruit using a sharp knife or pair of scissors. If you don’t, the rest of the fruit will become soft and possibly rotten.
Leave the spent passion fruits to dry out in a bowl or plate lined with paper towels before packing into containers.