A beautiful collection of vintage passion flower drawings and botanical illustrations, all in the Public Domain.
Passion flowers are not just stunning beautiful flowers, but the plants also produce some of the most delicious fruits. Personally, passion fruit is one of my favorite flavors.
They are also important host plants for butterflies, many species lay their eggs on the leaves of the plants.
The genus is also known as Passiflora and there are over 500 different species of the flowering vines. The majority of the species are found in South and Central America. Though some are found in the US and Southeast Asia, and Oceania.
However, due to their beautiful flowers and tasty fruit, the plant has been cultivated to grow as an ornamental plant in Europe.
Passion flowers have historically been used as a herbal medicine for anxiety and insomnia. I have a friend who has suffered from insomnia for years and has tried many traditional medicines, the only thing she found that worked was a sleep tea, the main ingredient of which is passion flowers.
Passion Flowers And Christ
For Christians, the “Passion” in “passion flower” refers to the passion of Jesus. Spanish Christian missionaries adopted the unique physical structures of this plant, particularly the numbers of its various flower parts, as symbols of the crucifixion of Christ.
- The corona represents the crown of thorns.
- The stigmas represent the nails used in the Crucifixion.
- The stamens represent the five wounds; and the five sepals and five petals represent 10 of the apostles, excluding Judas.
- The chalice-shaped ovary with its receptacle represents the Holy Grail.
- And the blue and white colors of many of the species’ flowers represent heaven and purity.
The Vintage Passion Flower Drawings and Illustrations
All of the following passion flower images are from 18th and 19th Century botany books and magazines, which means they are in the Public Domain.
To download a particularly passion flower botanical illustration, click on the title above the flower. A higher resolution image will open as a new window in your browser. If you right-click on that image with your mouse, you will have the option to save it to your device.
This passion flower is known colloquially as “red star” due to the appearance of the flower. It is native to the Amazon area of South America and bears an edible passion fruit.
This passion flower drawing is by the English botanist William Curtis and appeared in The Botanical Magazine, Volume 2 (1788).
This passion flower is also known as “lavender lady“, due to it’s color. It is another plant native to South America.
The botanical illustration of the flower is from “Edwards’ botanical register, or, Ornamental flower-garden and shrubbery” 1838.
This passion fruit flower is native to Colombia. And the illustration is from the Botanical Magazine 92 (1866).
Also known as the common passion flower, it’s native to South America. The fruit of the plant is orange and rather bland.
This passion flower botanical drawing is from the book “American Flora V.1 ” 1855
Passiflora Ciliata (fringed passion flower), is another passion flower botanical illustration from “Curtis’s Botanical Magazine” V.8 (1874).
From the book “Flore pittoresque et médicale des Antilles, ou Histoire naturelle des plantes usuelles” by Michel Étienne Descourtilz.
A black and white drawing of a passion flower by Aublet, Jean-Baptiste-Christ (1775).
A yellow passionfruit illustration by Joseph Franz von Jacquin (1844).
The silky Passion Flower is native to Central and South America, cultivated as a garden plant in India. The illustration is from the 1815 edition of The Botanical Register by Sydenham Edwards.
Purple Passion flower drawing by Joseph Franz Jacquin 1844. Also known as the maypop, it is one of the hardiest species of passionflower, it is both found as a wildflower in the southern United States and in cultivation for its fruit and striking bluish-purple blooms.
A beautifully exotic, pink Passion Flower. A very large passion flower with unusual double, star-shaped flowers.
From the 1873 edition of the “The florist and pomologist“. You can find more pomological illustrations here.
Another passion flower drawing from Curtis’s botanical magazine (1836). This species is a native of Brazil and is cultivated as an ornamental plant.
Another Passion flower illustration from the Botanical Register, (1815), Edwards, Sydenham.
The plant is native to the tropical Americas. The fruit has an excellent mild, perfumed taste, without the tartness of the common Passionfruit.
A passion flower native to South America. The plant is pollinated by the Sword-billed hummingbird. This bird is found throughout the northern Andes and is identified by its extremely large beak that is longer than the size of its entire body.
Another illustration from Curtis’s Botanical Magazine.
Also known as “Soft Leaf Passion Flower”. A banana passionfruit is native to the Andean valleys, it is commonly cultivated and its fruit is sold in local markets.
The passion fruit botanical illustration is from “ Popular greenhouse botany; containing a familiar and technical description of a selection of the exotic plants introduced into the greenhouse“, by Agnus Catlow (1857).
Another passion flower by Joseph Franz Jacquin, 1844.
The fruit of this plant is the largest of all the species of passionflower. Another illustration from Edward’s “Botanical Register“, 1815.
(This image was used for the DIY tea light lanterns craft)
This black and white passion flower drawing is by Charles Plumier 1693. The fruit of this South American plant is made into drinks and desserts. It is said to taste a bit like guava.
Another passion fruit botanical illustration from Edward’s “Botanical Register” (1815).
Apparently, this passion flower is a good one for the bees. This passion flower painting is by the Dutch botanist Abraham Jacobus Wendel (1868).
This passion flower botanical illustration is from the book “Flora of greenhouses and gardens of Europe: or descriptions and figures of the rarest and most deserving plants, newly introduced on the continent or in England” by Van Houtte, Louis (1852).
A beautiful stylised Passion flower plant art print from Die Pflanze in Kunst und Gewerbe. Translates as The Plant in Arts and Craft 1886.
A vintage Japanese art print of small birds and passion flower by Kono Bairei.
For another tropical beauty, check out the giant water lily (Victoria Amazonica).
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