Encore - Brazilian Passion Flower

May 07, 2016


Today, and every Saturday Earth Science Picture of the Day invites you to rediscover favorites from the past. Saturday posts feature an EPOD that was chosen by viewers like you in our monthly Viewers' Choice polls. Join us as we look back at these intriguing and captivating images.

Photographer: Mario Freitas
Summary Author: Mario Freitas

The magnificently colored flower above is called maracuja in South America. It’s also simply known as Maypop Passionflower (Passiflora edulis). Its greenish fruits are a type of berry that can be processed into juice, and its leaves are sometimes used in the treatment of anxiety and insomnia. Stepping on the ripened fruit may result in a loud popping sound, hence the name Maypop. Seventeenth-century Spanish colonizers established that the flower parts symbolized the suffering of Christ on the cross. Photo taken in Curitiba, Brazil on November 7, 2007.