Taxonomy of the genus Passiflora
Researching little-known and new species of Passiflora from Tropical America
This project involves research into the pollination, taxonomic position and the morphology of pollen, fruits and seeds of Passiflora. Since 2006, six articles have been published on Passiflora in Curtis’s Botanical Magazine and one in Kew Bulletin. Six of these were previously undescribed species. Another article resurrecting the species name P. transversa has been submitted and is awaiting publication. Further articles are planned on a new species in the P. organensis complex, and a monograph on the subgenus Passiflora section Dysosmis and Dysosmioides (the P. foetida group) and a new forma in the P. edulis group.
Field trips over the last few years have included visits to east, south and west Mexico, Baja California, Thailand, Brazil, Argentina, Trinidad, Guyana, French Guiana, southern USA and the Bahamas. Most recently John has been to French Guiana in July 2011 to study the habitats of local Passiflora species in areas that have until recently been hard to access, and to collect specimens of these species for horticultural and taxonomic purposes. Passiflora and rare Dilkea species have been brought into cultivation for research into pollination, the taxonomic position of species within the genus, and seed morphology. The 2011 trip also confirmed that a specimen resembling P. vespertilio but with purple colouring, which Christian Feuillet and John Vanderplank collected in 2009, is of a new species.
Key papers published since 2006
- Vanderplank, J. & Zappi, D. C. (2011). Passiflora cristalina, a striking new species of Passiflora (Passifloraceae) from Mato Grosso, Brazil. Kew Bull. 66(1): 149 – 153.
- Vanderplank, J. & Magdalena Rodriguez, C. (2010). Plate 673. Passiflora lindeniana (Passifloraceae). Curtis's Bot. Mag. 27(2): 123 – 131.
- Vanderplank, R. John R. (2009). Terms Used to Describe the Petiole Glands of Passiflora. Passiflora 19(1): 8 – 10.
- Feuillet, C. & Vanderplank J. (2009). Folia Taxonomica 14. Notes on Passiflora Supersection Coccinea (Passifloraceae) from the Guiana Shield. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 3(2): 581 – 582.
Project Partners and Collaborators
The UK National Collection of Passiflora
Ronald Boender - Butterfly World, Coconut Creek Florida
Dr Christian Feuillet - United States National Herbarium, Smithsonian Institution
Jorge Ochoa, Lecturer in Horticultural Studies at Los Angeles University
Sula E. Vanderplank - Herbarium, Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, Claremont, California
Cor Laurens - Curator of the Nationale Collectie Passifloras in the Netherlands
Rob McPhail – Editor, Passiflora Society International Newsletter
Aleksey Kirilov - Tsytsin Main Moscow Botanical Garden of Academy of Sciences
Jean-Jacques de Granville - Emeritus Professor of Botanical studies and Director of Herbarium FG
UK National Collection of Passiflora
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew