The medicinal properties of passion flower are attributed mainly to the alkaloids and flavonoids.
A strong woody perennial climbing vine. The stems are from 10-30 feet long, climbing by means of axillary tendrils. Leaves are cleft with 2-3 slightly toothed lobes. The solitary, axillary flowers are white with a purple, blue or pink calyx crown with numerous threads radiating from the center. The fruits are egg-shaped, the size of a small chicken egg. When stepped on they pop. Native to eastern and central U.S. Often cultivated in cooler climates.
The edible egg-shaped fruit contains a delicious white pulp and is made into refreshing drinks and ice creams. It is a antispasmodic, diuretic, laxative, and sedative. The whole plant is used to treat eyes. The root is used as a general tonic.
Origin(s): France, India, Italy, United States.
Latin Name(s): Passiflora incarnata
Also known as: Maypop, apricot vine, passion vine, purple passion flower, passiflore.
Plant Part(s) Used: Aerial Parts.
Appearance: Yellowish green.
Taste: Slightly bitter.
GMO Status: Non-GMO.
Additives: Free of any additives or preservatives.
Applications / Preparations: Can be put into capsules, teas, foods or infused as an herbal extract. For cosmetic use can be infused for soaps, lotions & creams. For aromatic can be used in incense blends.
Storage: Store in a sealed container in a cool, dry place.
Shelf Life: It is very difficult to pin down an exact expiration date for most single herbs as they do not really expire, they lose potency or strength over time but will still have value. Unlike synthetic material or drugs, herbs can contain many constituents that contribute to their medicinal effects. Even if when we know what the active constituents are, there are often many of them in a single herb, each with different rates of degradation. Some herbs lose their effect more easily. Other herbs that possess more stable compounds such as alkaloids or steroids will last much longer.
A huge part of the degradation rate of herbs depends also on the storage conditions of the herb, & even on the quality of the herb before storage – how it was grown, harvested, dried & processed. If the product is left in hot places or open to sunlight then it will degrade much quicker than if it was stored in cool, dry place & sealed tightly.
A good rule of thumb is that herbs should be stored no longer than 2-3 years but many herbs will have great strength much longer than that. To determine if a an herb is still good you can check the appearance & aroma. Herbs that are no longer acceptable will have lost much of its vibrant color & will instead appear dull & faded. The bigger key though is to smell the raw materials to see if the potent aroma is still present.