9 Reasons Why Your Passion Fruit Isn’t Ripening!

Passion fruits are a delicious summer fruit that many people enjoy worldwide, so it can be highly disappointing when your Passion fruit is not ripening like you thought it would in the time frame you had in mind. So, what are the reasons your Passion fruit is not ripening?

Passion Fruit

9 reasons your fruit may not ripen:

  1. Planted the wrong passion fruit
  2. It is not receiving the right nutrients
  3. It is not being watered properly
  4. Not kept in the right conditions
  5. The plant has a disease
  6. It is a late-season crop
  7. Harvesting too early
  8. The vine is old
  9. The plant is stunted

Is there anything you can do to help your Passion fruits ripen faster both on the vine and off the vine? Let us go through everything that might stop the ripening process and what you can do to help your Passion fruit vine ripen its fruit.

Reasons Your Passion Fruit Is Not Ripening

If you go and check your Passion fruit vine once again and the fruits are still green, this can leave you wondering if something may be wrong. Why are your Passion fruits not ripening? This question has several possible answers, so let us go through them all so you can see which one may apply to your Passion fruit.

1. Planted The Wrong Type Of Passion Fruit

There are bout 50 different types of Passion fruit plants that exist on earth today. Each one of these plants requires certain conditions for them to grow correctly and produce good fruit. So, to help you get the most fruit out of your Passion fruit vine, you need to plant the vine that can grow in the climate of your country.

If you do not plant the right Passion fruit vine, the one that will thrive in the weather conditions in your area, then the fruit the vine produces may take longer to ripen than usual, or it may not ripen at all.

2. The Plant Is Not Receiving The Right Nutrients

If the Passion fruit vine does not receive the correct nutrients in the right amounts, then this can cause various issues with the plant. One of these issues is that the fruit produced may not ripen as the plant does not have the resources to give to the fruit to develop correctly.

You need to research the type of Passion fruit vine you are growing in your garden and ensure that you give the vine precisely what it needs, or you may not get a fruit harvest from the vine this season or until you get the nutrient requirements right.

3. The Plant Is Not Being Watered Properly

Just as with the nutrients that the Passion fruit plant needs, the plant also requires the right amount of water to produce good fruit. If the Passion fruit vine is over or underwatered, there can be several problems.

If the vine is under-watered, the fruit will be dry and may not develop any pulp inside it, so the fruit will never ripen as there is no real fruit developing. If the Passion fruit vine is overwatered, this can cause the nutrients the plant needs to wash away and out of the soil, and the fruit will not ripen. This will also cause other issues in your plant; for example, the leaves will begin turning yellow.

4. The Plant Is Not Kept In The Right Conditions

Passion fruit vines require the right growing conditions so they can be healthy enough to produce fruit. One of these primary conditions is sunlight. Most Passion fruit vines need full sun conditions to grow, and if they do not get this, the fruit they produce can be small and sour if they ripen, but they may not ripen at all.

If you want your Passion fruit vine to produce tasty, juicy fruit that ripens well on the vine, you need to ensure that all the growing conditions of the vine are met.

Passion Fruit in Sunlight

5. The Plant Has A Disease

If your Passion fruit vine is suffering from a disease or an attack from pests, then the fruit may not ripen on the vine as the plant tried to fend off the disease or attacker. So, if your Passion fruit is not ripening, you need to check the vine thoroughly to ensure the plant is healthy and has no pests on it.

If your Passion fruit vine has a disease or pests, you may need to give up on your hopes for a harvest this season, and you need to start treatment as soon as you can to try to save your Passion fruit vine.

6. It Is A Late Season Crop

Some Passion fruit vines will begin to develop and grow fruit late into the growing season. Some may even start this process late into autumn, which can be a problem for the plant. If your plant produces a late crop, then this could impact the Passion fruit vines’ health through the winter as the plant may not have enough stored nutrients to survive.

Not only this, but the Passion fruit that the vine produces in this late harvest may not ripen at all before the winter, meaning you will not get a harvest from that vine this season. This problem can happen due to late summer and early autumn rains, which slightly confuse the Passion fruit vine.

This is, unfortunately, an unavoidable issue unless you keep your Passion fruit vines in a controlled greenhouse. But this can be the reason why your Passion fruits are not ripening.

7. Planning To Harvest Too Early

A mistake that is made by a lot of people with their Passion fruit vines is planning to harvest them too early. If you go and check your vines at the beginning of summer and the fruit is still green, this is because the Passion fruits take between two and three months to ripen fully, so you may be checking them too early.

So, it is suggested that you keep records of when you planted the Passion fruit vines, then they flowered, and then when the fruit started to form on the vines. This will help you keep note of when the fruits may begin to ripen.

If you keep track of every stage of the Passion fruit’s live cycle, you are less likely to worry about how fast the fruits are ripening or not as you will have the exact dates, and you will know when you can begin to harvest the fruits.

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8. The Passion Fruit Vine Is Old

Passion fruit vines do, unfortunately, have an expiration date of sorts. Once the Passion fruit vine begins to get old, its fruit production will slow down or become less efficient. This does mean that they may still produce fruit, but the fruit may take longer to ripen, or your Passion fruit may not ripen at all, depending on the age of the vines.

Passion fruit vines tend to only be viable and produce good fruit for about five to six years, after which the plant may die, or it may begin to decline in health and will not produce its fruit correctly.

Most commercial Passion fruit farmers will replant their vines after three years as this is when the vine’s prime producing stage is considered to be over. So, if your Passion fruits are not ripening, then you may need to think back to when the vine was planted, and you may need to consider replanting your Passion fruit vines. 

9. The Passion Fruit Plant Is Stunted

If the Passion fruit vine was not given the right conditions to grow correctly, then the Passion fruit vine could be stunted. When a Passion fruit vine is stunted in its early growing stages, this can also affect the plant for the rest of its fruit-bearing years.

If the Passion fruit vine did not get the correct nutrients for healthy growth, or they did not get the right amount of space to grow, then this could have stunted the vine. A stunted Passion fruit vine will still produce fruit, but the fruit may be small, and it may take longer for them to ripen, or they may not ripen at all.

This is why nutrition and the conditions you keep your Passion fruit vine are essential from the beginning of the vine’s life.

How To Ripen Passion Fruit Already Picked

You can use a few methods to help you ripen your green Passion fruits once they have been picked too early. So, if you are dealing with some stubborn green Passion fruits, you do not need to worry as you can still get them to a ripeness where you can eat them safely. Let us go through these methods so you can enjoy your Passion fruits sooner.

Keep The Green Passion Fruit In A Paper Bag

Fruits, including Passion fruits, generate a gas called Ethelyn during the ripening process. This gas is one of the main requirements that fruits need for them to ripen correctly. So, when you place your green Passion fruits into a paper bag, it will trap the Ethelyn gas in the bag and keep it around the Passion fruits.

This method will help make the ripening process go faster. This will only work with paper bags as other bags like plastic bags do not trap Ethelyn as effectively as the paper bag.

Store The Green Passion Fruit With Bananas

Bananas are a very common fruit that is generally kept in most households today. But you can use them for a lot more than just a delicious snack; you can use this fruit to help ripen other fruits faster.

Bananas are a fruit that produces a larger amount of Ethelyn gas than most other fruits and faster than other fruits. So, you can use bananas to help ripen your green Passion fruits faster. Store your green Passion fruits with some well-ripened bananas, and to increase the speed of the ripening process, you can store them together in a paper bag.

Bananas in Paper Bag

Cover Them With A Linen Cloth

A great way to help increase the speed of your green Passion fruits ripening is to simply cover the fruits in a linen cloth with them in your fruit bowl. This will not only help the Ethelyn gas that is produced by the fruits stay around the fruits, but it will also increase the humidity and help keep the temperature consistent.

Passion fruits need a higher humidity and warmer temperatures to ripen correctly, so if you place a linen cloth over them, this will help keep them warm, keep the humidity up and trap in the Ethelyn gas, ripening the fruit faster.

Keep Them Near A Heat Source

This is another excellent method to help ripen your Passion fruit faster at home if you picked them too early. With this method, the primary key is temperature.

Passion fruits are summer fruit and ripen during the summer heat, meaning they require warm temperatures to ripen correctly. They are more likely to ripen faster under warmer conditions. So, keeping your green and unripe Passion fruits near a heat source can help speed up the process.  

A good heat source to keep your passion fruits close to is your gas cooker or your radiator, as you only need to offer them some heat during the day and not for the entire day. The best way to execute this method is to place the green Passion fruits into a paper bag and then place them near the heat source, but not too close, so as to not start a fire or over-ripen the fruit.

Never Store Passion Fruits In The Refrigerator

Most people believe that you need to keep fruit in the refrigerator to let them ripen; this is not a method you should use as it will not ripen your green Passion fruit, or any other fruit, off the plant.

This is something that should be avoided, but it’s, unfortunately, something that many people believe and still do. Storing fruits in the refrigerator is an excellent way of keeping the fruits edible for a long time, but this will not help ripen the fruits in any way.

The cold temperatures of the refrigerator will slow down the ripening process of the Passion fruits, meaning they will take longer to ripen, if they ripen at all. The cold temperatures block the Ethelyn in the fruits, the naturally occurring gas that helps fruits ripen.  

Storing your Passion fruits in the refrigerator can even make the fruits dangerous to eat, and this can occur in the short time of just two weeks of the fruits being stored in the fridge.


Passion fruits are a delicious fruit that many people enjoy; this is why it can be disheartening when your Passion fruits are not ripening. But there are several reasons why this problem is occurring with your Passion fruit vine, but there are a few ways to fix these problems, so the hope is not lost. Good luck with your Passion fruits!


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    Author, blogger, podcaster, homesteading and permaculture enthusiast. I have a passion for sharing what I learn and helping others on their journey. If you're looking for me, you'll usually find me in the garden.

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This Post Has One Comment

  1. Debra

    I have lots of passion fruit in the vine third year now. I’m finding a lot of fruit shriveling up when still green. This did not happen past two seasons. Why is this happening.

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