All about plant fertilization

How and when to fertilize Passion Fruit vines


Passion fruit is a climbing plant native to the Amazon jungle. The characteristic for which it is cultivated is for its exotic fruit. It is oval in shape, about 8 to 10 cm in diameter and with a yellow or purple shell. Its flavor is aridulce with a delicious aroma. Currently, its cultivation is not only limited to South America, but has spread to many parts of the world. Given the popularity of this fruit, we will dedicate an article to talk about the use of fertilizer for passion fruit. How and when you should apply it and what nutrients are most needed at each stage.

Fun fact: Did you know that when the Spanish arrived in the new world and saw the flower of this fruit tree for the first time, they related it to the crown of thorns of Jesus Christ. They found similarities in the shape of the flower itself, where they claimed to find the elements that were used in the crucifixion of Jesus (the cross, the nails and the hammer).

1. What are the three numbers in a package of fertilizer?


We can’t start talking about fertilizers without first making sure you understand what the NPK values ​​are. If you have ever bought a fertilizer you will have noticed that each pack has three numbers separated by a hyphen. Did it ever cross your mind to find out what they are?

Yes, yes, those three numbers are nothing more than the famous NPK values. A letter for each of the most important nutrients in the development of a plant. Let’s see which one.

Passion Fruit fertilizer
Passion Fruit
  • N stands for nitrogen. It is the main nutrient that influences the growth of a plant.
  • P stands for phosphorous. It is responsible for promoting the formation of roots and the development of flowers and fruits.
  • K stands for potassium. It is very useful to help the transfer of water and nutrients in your plants.

On the other hand, what each number means is the percentage by weight of each nutrient with respect to the total weight. Let’s clarify this using a simple example:

“Suppose you bought a 10-20-15 bag of 10 kg fertilizer. In that case, that package contains 1 kg of nitrogen, 2 kg of phosphorus and 1.50 kg of potassium. The rest of the weight is completed with other nutrients and other components “.

I have no doubt that with the previous example everything must have been more than clear. Therefore, we are in a position to continue.

2. Caring your Passion Fruit


Although this article is dedicated to the fertilization of passion fruit, we will take a moment to list the most important care you must take. This is because we want to make sure you have all the tools to give the best to this fruit tree.

Note that the list has not been sorted by priority. Each point is as important as the previous and the next, so apply them equally to each.

  • Soil: Although it adapts to many types of soils, those with good drainage and a good amount of organic matter are very favorable. It is also important that its pH is kept between 6.0 and 7.0.
  • Temperature: Since it is a tropical plant, the ideal temperature range is between 24 and 28 ° C. It does not resist low temperatures well.
  • Sun: it needs a good exposure to the sun, especially for the correct ripening of its fruits. Approximately five hours of direct sunlight is recommended.
  • Environmental humidity: a high percentage of humidity is very good to improve the quality of the fruit. Dry climates during production may bring lower quality fruit.
  • Pruning: pruning is a fundamental point, especially for proper training. Developing this point would take us the entire article, so we recommend that you visit this article on passion fruit pruning.
  • Pests: There are various pests that can attack you. Among the most common are thrips, bedbugs, and red mites. Regular monitoring of these insects is essential to attack on time.
  • Fertilization: cannot be missing from this list. In the sections that follow, we will elaborate on this point.

3. Feeding Passion Fruit


If what we want is to make the most of your passion fruit, that is, to produce the best fruits, fertilization is essential. You will see that it is not a recipe that always applies the same, but it changes as the plant grows.

It is also directly related to the characteristics of the soil. The most recommended, especially in large crops, is that before creating a fertilization plan, the soil is analyzed. This will give you a clear idea of possible nutrient deficiencies.

If you are reading this post, you will probably be interested in learning about fertilizing these other plants.

3.1 Best fertilizer for Passion Fruit vines

There is no single ideal fertilizer for your passion fruit. Also, I can list the fertilizers you will need to carry out the fertilization:

  • Granulated fertilizer of formula 10-30-10 or 12-24-12.
  • Urea
  • Potassium sulfate.
  • Diammonium phosphate.
  • Organic fertilizers such as manure and vegetable compost.

They are all widely used fertilizers, so you should have no problem getting them. Know that each of them will be applied at different stages of the life of the fruit tree. What we will discuss in section 3.4.

3.2 Knowing the root system

We cannot talk about how to fertilize a passion fruit without first knowing the behavior of its roots. This will ensure that the application is more efficient, otherwise the fertilizer will be wasted.

The reticular system of this vine is extremely superficial. 90% of the roots are between 0.15 and 0.50 m deep. In addition, 70% are located about 0.60 m from the trunk. Both factors are essential to know where to place the fertilizer for a good distribution in all the roots.

3.3 When to fertilize?

Fertilizing your passion fruit should begin even before transplanting. At the same time, the seedlings must be fertilized from the beginning, when they are in the nursery.

Once established, the plant must be fertilized according to the demand for nutrients. For example, the demand for nitrogen increases during vegetative development. While other nutrients such as phosphorus, potassium and calcium are more necessary during flowering and fruit development.

We will analyze in the next section how to carry out fertilization step by step.

3.4 How to fertilize?

Fertilizing passion fruit is very important for the proper development of the fruit. Therefore, it must start from the time of planting. Once the sowing is done and until the seedlings reach 10 cm, they should be fertilized with formulas 10-30-10 or 12-24-12. As you will notice, these formulas have a higher concentration of phosphorus, something that helps improve root development in the early stages of the plant.

Furthermore, the soil where germination takes place must be enriched with good organic matter. Once the plant exceeds 10 cm in height, you can start with foliar fertilizations every 10 days with the following mixture:

  • Urea 46% – 10 g per liter of water.
  • Potassium nitrate – 10 g per liter of water.

Between 3 or 4 weeks before transplant, it is recommended to apply decomposing organic matter to the soil. It is also a good time to carry out a soil study to schedule fertilization more specifically.

Once your passion fruit has been transplanted and with a regularity of 2 months, an edaphic fertilization should be carried out with the following formula:

  • Urea 35%.
  • 35% potassium sulfate.
  • Diammonium phosphate 20%.
  • Items less than 10%.

In the following image we will see how fertilization should be carried out. It is important to keep the distance to the stem, at the same time making a trench not more than 10 cm deep to place the fertilizer.

Fertilization area - Passion Fruit
Fertilization area

This form of application is derived from the distribution of the root system. By doing so, and accompanied by good irrigation, you ensure that fertilization is efficient.

4. Symptoms of nutritional deficiencies


It is not only important to know what fertilizer to use on your passion fruit, how and when to apply it, you must also know the symptoms of nutritional deficiencies. In this way, you will know when to reinforce the application of a particular nutrient.

For example, nitrogen deficiency is evidenced by very thin branches, yellowed leaves due to the lack of chlorophyll. This last symptom begins to be seen to a greater extent in the older leaves. Younger leaves will have a lighter green coloration than normal.

In the case of phosphorus, you can notice its deficiency if the old dark green leaves have spots that join together and end up forming a complete yellow sheet. In addition, the petioles and ribs acquire a light red color, with very distant leaves, weak and thin branches.

When there is a lack of potassium, you will notice that the leaves tend to curl down. The branches are reduced both in number and in thickness. And the tendrils of the lower and middle third wither and dry. While those in the upper third remain green but woody in appearance.

5. How to apply fertilizer on passion fruit (video)


To end the publication, let’s see the following video from the Kalim Kali Farmers Uganda channel. In it you will see how fertilization is carried out in the early stages of passion fruit. I have no doubt that it will help you to learn in a much more graphic way part of the views so far. 🙂

If you are reading this post, you will probably be interested in learning about fertilizing these other plants.

We have reached the end of the post, I hope there is no doubt and you can grow your passion fruit in the best way.

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