Passion flower (Passiflora incarnata L.) is an herb that has traditionally been used as a sedative and to alleviate upset stomach. All of the passion flower plant's above-ground foliage and flowers can be used medicinally. Passion flower is generally considered to be safe, but according to the National Institutes of Health, there has not been enough data collected to determine if habitual passion flower use produces significant side effects. To stay safe, inform your doctor about the details of your use of passion flower herb to treat your symptoms.
Harvest the passion flower in spring when it begins to form buds. Prune the uppermost (newest) growth of the plant. Do not prune more than one-third of the plant's foliage at s time. Leaves are the easiest to dry and work with, but stems can be harvested as well. Take care not to remove too many buds or there will be fewer flowers this season.
Inspect the cut foliage for insects, and rinse it off in the sink thoroughly. Pat the foliage with paper towels until it is completely dry.
Spread the herbs out on a drying rack (an old window screen works fine). Place them in a warm dark place and leave them to dry. This may take between two and four weeks. If you are in a hurry, place the rack in an oven heated to 180 degrees F. Keep the door propped 1 or 2 inches and heat the foliage for three to four hours.
Measure 0.5 to 2 grams of dried herb and eat. Repeat three to four times daily.
Measure four to eight grams of dried herb. Place them in a tea infuser and steep in one cup of boiling water for three to five minutes. Drink the tea. Repeat three to four times daily.