Passion Flower Powder – Passiflora incarnata
Known also as the passion flowers or passion vines, is a genus of about 500 species of flowering plants, the type genus of the family Passifloraceae. They are mostly vining, but some grow as shrubs, and a few species are herbaceous. The monotypic genus Hollrungia seems to be inseparable from Passiflora, but further study is needed.
The family Passifloraceae has a pantropical distribution. Passiflora itself is absent from Africa, where many other members of the family Passifloraceae occur (e.g. the more plesiomorphicAdenia). Most species are found in South America, eastern Asia, southern Asia and New Guinea. Nine separate species of Passiflora are native to the United States, found from Ohio to the north, west to California and south to the Florida Keys. Four or more species are also found in Australia and a single endemic species in New Zealand. New species continue to be identified: for example, P. pardifolia and P. xishuangbannaensis have only been known to the scientific community since 2006 and 2005, respectively.
The parts of the passion flower plant that are traditionally used for medicinal purposes include the leaves, flowers, and stems.The plant also produces fruit, which is commonly known as passion fruit and is consumed as a food in many parts of the world. The plant contains several active compounds, including flavonoids, alkaloids, and glycosides, which contribute to its medicinal properties.
Passionflower has long aided and calmed indigenous groups throughout the Americas for hundreds of years before the land was colonized. Native to the Southeastern United States, Central America and South America, it is known for its calming properties and is used to promote relaxation. In traditional medicine, passion flower is used to promote a sense of well being. In some traditional formulations, passion flower is combined with other plants, such as valerian and hops, to enhance the state of calm and relaxation.
In pre-colonial times, Native American tribes used passionflower both medicinally and as food. The Cherokee peoples traditionally boil and fry the young greens to eat as well as use topically. Spanish missionaries and other European settlers promoted passion flower as a medicinal herb throughout their migration colonizing America. Passion flower has also been used for religious and spiritual purposes in various cultures throughout history. In some Native American cultures, passion flower is used in rituals to promote relaxation and meditation.