Purple Passion Flower, Tippling Bees and A Winner!


My Purple Passion Flower vine is growing by leaps and bounds and starting to bloom!


I didn’t plant this vine, it happily volunteered from the field next to my Potting Shed.


You can read it about here, Dishing Up Blooms.


Passiflora incarnata, commonly known as maypop, purple passionflower, wild apricot, and wild passion vine, is a vigorous grower and common wildflower in the southern United States.


It pushed its way up between cracks of the boards of the porch and is making its way over to climb my ladder.


 I attached some fishing line along the length of my shutter for it to trail and climb.


Each bloom lasts a day and the blooms are irresistible to bees!


I noticed once the bumble bees land, they’re in no hurry to leave to sample or taste a different flower. They also don’t seem to mind sharing, clinging on to the passionflower bloom and each other. When I took a closer look, they looked like they were sleeping or had died and gone to heaven in a nectar-induced state.


I had to Google to see if this was normal *bee*-havior :)


I laughed out loud when found I this excerpt from an 1853 volume, Wonders of the Insect World: With Illustrative Engravingsby Francis Channing Woodworth:

“I regret exceedingly to be obliged to announce the fact, that bumble bees are sometimes given to tippling. It seems that the nectar in the passion flower has an intoxicating effect upon these creatures, and that they now and then indulge in excessive drinking, when this beverage is within their reach. Instead of being content with a moderate draught, like orderly and temperate bees, they yield to temptation, and drink until they are quite drunk. They become so stupid, indeed, from their intemperate drinking, that they scarcely can fly home to their nest; and it sometimes happens, that one may see half a dozen of these poor creatures lying on the ground, near the goblet which has so grossly intoxicated them, and entirely unable to stir an inch. The dunces! They are almost as silly as the human drunkards that we too frequently meet with.”


This bumble bee appears to be sleeping off his *buzz* :) in the shade.

Bees and Passion Flower

 These tippling bees pollinate the flowers which become egg-sized fruits and make a loud popping sound when crushed, hence the name, Maypop. The fruit starts out green and hollow and eventually becomes sweet when ripe and can be eaten and used to make to make jelly or jam.


 I haven’t eaten one before but will let you know how they taste when they’re ripe.


Have you ever eaten a Maypop or made Maypop jelly?

The winner of my Bees Knees Summertime Sipping Giveaway is

Sherlie Magaret!

Congratulations, I’ll *bee* in touch by email and get your goodies to you!


If you need a recipe for some summertime tippling, help yourself to

The Bee’s Knees Lavender Lemonade Cocktail.

The Bee's Knees Lavender Lemonade Cocktail

A lemonade version of a classic cocktail with a Provençal twist.


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  39 comments for “Purple Passion Flower, Tippling Bees and A Winner!

  1. July 29, 2015 at 5:57 am

    Silly ~but happy~ bees:@) I’ve never heard of this fruit or jelly, can’t wait to hear what you think of the fruit Mary:@)

  2. Linda
    July 29, 2015 at 6:56 am

    Really a fascinating fact about bees. I’ve only seen the Passion flower in Key
    West where people would float the buds in their swimming pools when they had parties.
    The flowers almost look unreal they are so unusual. Thanks for a great post.

  3. July 29, 2015 at 7:09 am

    Fun information about the wonderful insects- bees…..and the flowers are an amazing wonder in their intricacies……as always thanks for your superior posts…….love ’em

  4. Sherlie Magaret
    July 29, 2015 at 7:17 am

    I loved the bee story and it was so cute, it is what they deserve for drinking too much nectar but they do have the good sense to not fly home to the hive. And then I am reading down and there is my name as the winner. I am so delighted as I put those jars on my Amazon wish list to order later. I have a thing for canning jars and love the different designs and colors now. I enjoy using them for a lot of things. Thank you, thank you for choosing me.

  5. July 29, 2015 at 7:25 am

    That is such a funny story about the “drunk” bees. Your passion flower is just beautiful, how amazing that it found its way to you. I guess it was just meant to be!

  6. Ellen Stillabower
    July 29, 2015 at 7:31 am

    CONGRATULATIONS Sherlie!! You received some neat stuff!!🐝🐝🐝 I read the little story to my hubby and we both had a good laugh over it!! I’ve heard of the jelly but never tasted any..let us know, Mary, how it is?? Thanks for the give away!! 🐝🐝🐝 the anticipation is always fun!!! 😍

  7. July 29, 2015 at 7:45 am

    Hi Mary!
    Who knew that there was such a thing as “drunk bees”??? I always learn something from you! Congratulations to the winner. Hugs to Chloe and Gracie!!

  8. Kathi
    July 29, 2015 at 7:53 am

    WOW, what interesting facts about the Bees and the Passion Flower. Thank you for sharing all this awesome information. Congratulations to Sherlie for winning such a fun give-away.

  9. July 29, 2015 at 8:17 am

    Wow, I’ve never know all that about the passion vine, Mary, and have never heard of Maypop jam or jelly. The nectar must be quite intoxicating after reading what happens to the bees!!!
    Yea for Sherlie!! She will love her winnings!!
    Is that another passion vine climbing your ladder? I love that the one on your shed just popped between the cracks. It knew that you would love and care for it with your magical touch.

    • Annette L Torgler
      July 31, 2023 at 7:00 pm

      I had always admired our neighbors passion vine growing up. On vacation in Tennessee several years back I grabbed some starts and drove home to Ohio hoping they survived. Well, after moving 3 times I always took my passion with me. Now we have a trellis for our passion which attracts “drunk bees” every summer. I am curious about eatting the fruit. I have always been nervous to do so. I need to read up on it more. I do however love my passion with a passion!!

  10. July 29, 2015 at 9:19 am

    You got some fabulous shots, love the midair one and dishes. I grew up with drunk birds, we had a berry bush by my window and every fall there was a drunken brawl as they feasted themselves to non ability to fly, I was only 6 but those memories are still vivid! The lushness of your shed is such a contrast to our life, the fire broke through the containment yesterday, mandatory evacuation for us, I saw a pic of the fire on the ridge above us, 110 degrees today with extremely low humidity, to see your flowers flow and bees slumber away lakeside looks idyllic….

  11. July 29, 2015 at 9:53 am

    what a fun commentery on Bee-havior. they have the right idea for a warm Southern afternoon. find some shade and a tasty libation!

  12. rattlebridge farm
    July 29, 2015 at 10:05 am

    A bee-autiful post about the secret life of bees, Mary. Your maypops are whimsical and gorgeous, all at once. I’m putting them on my “to plant” list. Thanks for brightening my morning! xxoo

  13. Linda E.
    July 29, 2015 at 10:13 am

    A wonderful post! It was so interesting to learn about passion flowers and the bees that love them! Such a lovely look for a wildflower!

  14. Carolyn
    July 29, 2015 at 10:14 am

    Once again, Mary, your blog is over-the-top fascination! Love the photos, all your lush flowers, & of course, the bee’s knees! Thanks for the very entertaining story too! Blessings!

  15. Sandi Allen
    July 29, 2015 at 10:51 am

    Beautiful Post as always! Congratulations to the winner!

  16. franki
    July 29, 2015 at 11:19 am

    “Welcome to the Purple Passion Pub!!!” franki

  17. July 29, 2015 at 2:18 pm

    Now who knew that bees would get TIPPSY!!?? Too funny!!! I just finished reading the Secret Life of Bees so this post is very timely! Congrats to the winner of your give away too. I have never heard of the jelly, am anxious to know what it tastes like! Got Joe home around noon:):):)

  18. July 29, 2015 at 3:20 pm

    Bellissime le tue foto e il tuo blog, complimenti! Sei fortunata ad avere tanta natura attorno. Anche io adoro il viole e i fiori di Passiflora.

    Beautiful your photos and your blog, congratulations! You’re lucky to have so much nature around. Also I love the purple and the flowers of Passiflora

  19. July 29, 2015 at 3:59 pm

    The bees love the passion flowers. Great shots of them!

  20. July 29, 2015 at 4:10 pm

    Wow, who knew???? That is too hilarious Mary! I’ve never heard of a Maypop, and I will tell you again that I think you have magical powers luring this vine to just arrive on the scene and grow it’s way up the potting shed wall, like Jack and the Beanstalk! I shall never look at a bumble bee the same way after reading this post! Congrats to the lucky winner, what a fun giveaway!

  21. July 29, 2015 at 4:22 pm

    Passion fruit vines are very prolific here…we can find them growing wild in many areas of the islands..there are several varieties. The fruit of some is sweeter than others…and the tart ones can be very tart… Not only for jams and jellies, but we using them in many ways…the juice is wonderful mixed with iced tea…or in a pie similar to Key Lime…or as a fruit ‘butter’ to eat with ‘biscuits or scones’…

  22. Laurie
    July 29, 2015 at 5:41 pm

    A most wonderfully insightful & entertaining bit of bee trivia! Can’t wait to share this with friends🐝

  23. Laurie
    July 29, 2015 at 5:49 pm

    ALao, I made and some delicious passion fruit jelly last summer! The jelly color glistening in the jars was spectacular😊 Used the recipe found here: http://www.mylilikoikitchen.

  24. July 29, 2015 at 9:17 pm

    How interesting is that about the bees!

  25. July 29, 2015 at 10:43 pm

    This is so funny about the “drunken” bees! Congratulations to your winner!!


  26. Patty Soriano
    July 30, 2015 at 9:05 am

    These vines are also host plants for some butterflies. Mine is taken over by caterpillars eating their way into butteflies… and then the other day it looked like an oriole helping himself to a caterpillar buffet. :-( My “fruits” are always hollow, so no jam for me !

  27. Ellen
    July 30, 2015 at 3:05 pm

    Crazy bees….. tippling away. So, I read all the replies, and finally I saw Laurie’s web page called Lilikoi Kitchen, which is the name I first learned and found it was also known as, “Passion” flower. I dated a guy whose mom was from the island of Kauai and she had a Lilikoi plant in her California garden, along with Ti plants, and she made juice from the glut of lilikoi fruit. It was great! (Ti leaves were for wrapping food for pit BBQ, LauLau, astounding!)
    Buzz on!!

  28. July 30, 2015 at 4:14 pm

    You are like me…I am always taking bee pictures so of course I gravitated to yours :) I had seen a bee taking a nap on a sunflower petal / now I imagine he was a bit drunk, lol. One of my granddaughters told me that she’d ‘petted’ a bee…the big slow kind….I just love them…:) your photos are gorgeous

  29. Lin
    July 30, 2015 at 4:43 pm

    Thank you for this fun story. I have a Passion Flower vine that grows on a trellis each year here in Tennessee. I brought a cutting from Texas. I did not know you could eat the fruits. I will look forward to you telling us how they taste.

  30. Paula
    July 30, 2015 at 10:04 pm


    Thanks for sharing, and how interesting ! mmm I would have ever known about silly bees, made me giggle!! That is so neat how you photo the one bee in flight !!

    Congrats to the lucky winner, I bet she is bee=lighted !!


  31. Cindy
    July 30, 2015 at 11:47 pm

    Hilarious! Your quite the storyteller!

  32. July 31, 2015 at 5:44 am

    As a new beekeeper I just loved this post. I’ll be a new follower

  33. July 31, 2015 at 8:14 am

    Oh my what a story about the bees!!!..I used to have that same vine in Florida, but thought that it would not grow in NC…Now I will be on the lookout for one to plant…I so love this vine and its gorgeous flower…and I secretly want to get the bees drunk!…

  34. August 6, 2015 at 10:36 am

    That is a beautiful plant Mary! Thanks for sharing at Home Sweet Home!

  35. September 18, 2015 at 5:42 pm

    As a child we had a ball playing with May pops and I’ve always loved the beautiful flower. What a neat volunteer plant for your potting shed. Perfect!! Lovely post. So charming and delightful.
    I’ve been a busy bee with projects and will shock everyone when I do a blog post sometime before too long.
    Thanks Mary for always inspiring.

  36. Emily
    June 7, 2018 at 2:26 pm

    I am curious where you found your quote from Woodworth about the bees getting drunk. I cannot find the book anywhere.

    • June 7, 2018 at 3:31 pm

      I provided a text link to the source of the quote (highlighted in red). Click on it and will take you there. 🐝

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