Herbs - Medicinal Plants
Characteristics of the Passiflora or Passion flower. Scientific name. Identification, characteristics, origin, content and active ingredients of Passiflora incarnata or Passion flower.
Scientific name: Passiflora incarnata
Other names: Passion flower, Passion vines.
The Passion flower is a plant with a permanent woody stem that can reach up to 10 m. The axillary pedicle grows to 8 cm and holds only a flower. Flowers are lined with a diameter of 5 to 9 cm. The five sepals are gray on the outside and white inside. Has a secondary corolla within the petals consisting of a 4-fiber ring arranged radially in the axis of the flower, which are white on the inside and purple in the outside. The ovary has 3 carpels and 3 styles, which end in a thick stigma. The 5 stamens are bound to the base.
Parts used: The whole or fractional plant and the aerial parts. The yellow pulp of the berries is edible. Some related species are also edible or have healing properties.
Passion Flower is originative from the southeastern part of North America untill Argentina and Brazil. It is grown as an ornamental plant in Europe.
The main active ingredients of Passiflora are:
Flavonoids: quercetol, kaempferol, apigenin, luteolin;
C-heteroside: vitexin, saponaroside, schaftoside, isoschaftoside, isovitexin, isoorientin.
Phytosterols: sitosterol, stigmasterol;
Traces of cyanogenicheterosides: ginocardina.
Traces of essential oil with a composition little studied.
Dry drug must contain at least 0.3% (Pharmacopoeia Helvetica) or 0.4% (German Pharmacopoeia) of flavonoids expressed as hyperoside, or at least 0.8% of flavonoids in vitexin (E.S.C.O.P.)
The presence of harmaline, frequently indicated, has not been properly confirmed.
>> continue reading about the Passiflora health benefits
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