California Gardens - The Year Round Gardening Site

Passion Vine Egg Mimic

The foliage of Passion vine is repeatedly decimated by the caterpillars of the Gulf Fritillary Butterfly in our garden. This can happen several times a year as new generations of caterpillars hatch and eat their way to maturity. In response the Passion Vines have, somewhere in their evolutionary history found advantage in growing glands that resemble Butterfly eggs. It is a certainty that this does not completely dissuade the butterfly from laying her eggs on the Passion Vine. She usually does this on the underside of the leaves. But it must help. Thankfully the Passion Vine is very resilient and can recover even when it has been fully denuded by the caterpillars.

Passion Vine Egg Mimic

Specialized glands resemble butterfly eggs - Passion vine egg mimic - Passiflora caerulea. High resolution photos are part of our garden image collection.