Latin Name: Passiflora incarnata (Passifloraceae)

Common Names: Passionflower, Apricot vine, Maypop, Love in a mist

Part(s) used: Flower, leaf, stem (Aerial)

Form(s) used: Infusion, tincture, wash/compress


– Infusion: 6-10 g, 1-2x/day
– Tincture: 0.5-3 ml, 2-3x/day
– Wash/Compress: soak clean fabric in infusion (6-10g), then apply topically as needed throughout day

Herbal Actions

– Vital Stimulant
– Cooling
– Dry
– Calming and Sinking
– Relaxant
– Somewhat Bitter

Clinical Actions

– Sedative to the Central Nervous System and Antispasmodic/Muscle Relaxant to Autonomic Nervous System due to flavonoids, indole alkaloids, and coumarins
– Hypnotic

Constituents: Flavonoids (apigenin-C-glycosides), maltol, coumarins indole alkaloids (passiflorane, harman), volatile oil, phenolic acids, minerals (iron, calcium, phosphorus)

Primary Uses: Provides relief to Central Nervous System for nervousness, anxiety, and insomnia and to the Autonomic Nervous System  for nervous cardiac disorders (rapid heartbeat); reduces painful menstruation; topical usage soothes painful ulcerative skin conditions; reduces mild withdrawal symptoms from alcohol or benzodiazepines; adjuvant for epilepsy

Cautions, Contraindications, and Possible Adverse Effects: Contraindicated during pregnancy due to the tendency of alkaloid constituents to stimulate the uterus. Passionflower possesses slight cumulative toxicity, therefore should only be used for occasional or short term use when taken singularly. Very small doses have been known to cause nausea and vomiting.


Written By: Sadie A. Garner, Clinical Herbalist

Resources Cited: Skenderi- p. 282-283, Holmes- p.813-815, Actions Database- p.84, CSCH Notes- Nervous System

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