Night-Time Fragrance!: Love Moonflowers!

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Night-Time Fragrance!

By Horseshoe
January 20, 2012

The absolutely best vine for your deck or porch, or near an open window, is the Moonvine (Ipomoea alba), not to be confused with Moonflower. Grown on a trellis or deck railing, its night-blooming 6” pure white flowers offer a fragrance to behold. Pull up a chair in the evening and watch the flowers unfold before your very eyes!

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Name: Vicki
North Carolina
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vic
Jan 19, 2012 8:18 PM CST
One of my absolute favorites Shoe! Hurray!

Everyone should grow them Thumbs up
Name: Sharon
Calvert City, KY (Zone 7a)
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Sharon
Jan 19, 2012 8:37 PM CST
My favorite too, Shoe.
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Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
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sheryl
Jan 20, 2012 10:00 AM CST
Hey Shoe - I got some "Moonflower vine" seeds from a woman last summer- they're tan, about the same size and almost the same shape as corn, come in pairs from a pod that carries a few pairs. Do you know if that's Moonvine or Moonflower? She said it was a pretty prolific plant.

Would the other plant happen to be a type of Datura?
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
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Horseshoe
Jan 20, 2012 10:13 AM CST
Hmmm, I forgot all about submitting that tip! But here it is the middle of winter and I bet we could all use a whiff of that fragrance, eh?

I usually grow Moonvine around the big deck, and over it, every year. I'd hate to think of a summer w/out it. Although I seldom sit and relax on the deck anymore there was a time I'd pull up a chair and watch the flowers start wiggling on their own accord, then gently unfold in a twirling motion, opening right before your very eyes. A sight to behold.

Those huge flowers, usually 6" across, are pollinated in my area by Luna moths, another treat to see. I've read where hummingbird moths do the pollination but I seem to get the Luna moth here.

Happy Gardening, Folks...yeh, even in the winter I'm sure there is plenty to do!
Shoe

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Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
For our friend, Shoe. Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Enjoys or suffers cold winters Birds Permaculture Container Gardener
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Horseshoe
Jan 20, 2012 10:22 AM CST
Howdy, Sheryl...
(Guess I went off looking for that pic while you were posting!)

When I save seeds they come from a large brownish/black pod, usually with four or so seeds in them. And yep, they can be tan or darker (some are dark brown), many of them white. And you got that right, they look like large corn kernels.

The only seeds of Datura I've saved has been from D. stramonium, which is pretty much a weed here; a pretty weed but sure can take over. Those seeds are blacks and much smaller than moonvine. Maybe someone who has grown more Datura varieties than I can elaborate more.

I always like to ask folks, just to keep thing clear, "are you referring to MoonVine or MoonFlower" because so many folks interchange the two. Moonvine seems to more often refer to Ipomea alba while Moonflower refers to Datura.

Maybe I can take some pics tonight of my moonvine seeds and post. That should help you decide, eh?

Shoe
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
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crittergarden
Jan 20, 2012 2:12 PM CST
I have a hard time getting them to flower.
Several annuals mess me up this way.
They just don't have time to start from seed and make it all the way to flowering here in my zone 5 yard.
Guess I'll make a jug of them as I'm winter sowing for the first time this year.
Or will the seedlings croak if there's a late temperature crash?
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
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valleylynn
Jan 20, 2012 2:50 PM CST
This sounds like such a wonderful annual to try. I've never seen them before. Wonder if they would grow here with out cooler night time summer temps?
central Illinois
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jmorth
Jan 20, 2012 2:52 PM CST
I've always known this as Moonflower.
Moon Vine (Ipomoea alba)
Nothing that's been done can ever be changed.
Name: Sharon
Calvert City, KY (Zone 7a)
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Sharon
Jan 20, 2012 3:25 PM CST
Same thing, isn't it, J??
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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
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valleylynn
Jan 20, 2012 3:44 PM CST
Moonflower is a common name for all of these plants:
Nightblooming cereus species, including Hylocereus.
Datura species, including D. inoxia
Ipomoea species previously separated in Calonyction, including I. alba
Mentzelia species, including M. pumila
Name: Vicki
North Carolina
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vic
Jan 20, 2012 4:49 PM CST
Lynn, I'm pretty sure I have seeds and I know I have your address Green Grin!

I'll send you some.
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
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valleylynn
Jan 20, 2012 5:18 PM CST
Thank you Vicki, I would love to try some this year. They would be wonderful growing up the deck supports. : )
Wonder if they would Winter Sow? I'll have to look that up.
Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
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sheryl
Jan 20, 2012 7:41 PM CST
Thanks, Shoe - that be it, I do believe!

Crittergarden, I've heard they like it pretty warm - I'd plant it indoors (or WS) and find a southern wall for it to climb on.
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


FRANCE (Zone 9a)
rosebud
Jan 21, 2012 9:59 AM CST
Hello
I am in zone 9
cool, wet summer
This vine is difficult to flourish in my climate
Sow warm
To be installed against a wall hot
The flower opens live!
Very large and feels very good ...
There are two:
- Heart-shaped leaves and very large flowers
-like foliage of ivy and flowers smaller

I will buy new seeds this year
A re-try for an amateur of scented plants.
Name: Anna
North Texas (Zone 8a)
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canadanna
Jan 21, 2012 10:14 AM CST
Thanks for the reminder. I tried this many years ago thinking that they would grow over some shrubs. I wasn't successful, but maybe WS will help.
Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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Horseshoe
Jan 21, 2012 11:23 AM CST
Does winter sowing give you that much of a head start? If not, I'd recommend starting them inside four weeks or so before your last frost.

I've found that sowing in situ takes a long time for the seeds to germinate. They have an exceptionally hard coat and it'll take quite a while to soften it up before they germinate. They'll need to soften up, then get good and warm before they start growing. I normally nick the seeds then soak over night (sometimes longer) in tepid water. They germinate within a few days that way, then they get potted up once they get true leaves (into 4" pots). When the ground has warmed up and night time temps are above 50 or, preferably 60º they go in the ground. Growth is very slow until the air temps are consistently warm and the ground temps are also.

rosebud, your vines should do great against your warm wall. I hope you have a great vine or two this coming year!

Shoe
FRANCE (Zone 9a)
rosebud
Jan 21, 2012 12:21 PM CST
Horseshoe said:Does winter sowing give you that much of a head start? If not, I'd recommend starting them inside four weeks or so before your last frost.

I've found that sowing in situ takes a long time for the seeds to germinate. They have an exceptionally hard coat and it'll take quite a while to soften it up before they germinate. They'll need to soften up, then get good and warm before they start growing. I normally nick the seeds then soak over night (sometimes longer) in tepid water. They germinate within a few days that way, then they get potted up once they get true leaves (into 4" pots). When the ground has warmed up and night time temps are above 50 or, preferably 60º they go in the ground. Growth is very slow until the air temps are consistently warm and the ground temps are also.

rosebud, your vines should do great against your warm wall. I hope you have a great vine or two this coming year!

Shoe

Hi

if you're lucky enough to be in zone 9b or 10
you must try
I'm in zone 9a and my summers lack of heat
The problem is the acclimation of plants after 6 / 8 weeks in hot

The cultivar of Ipomoea alba with a heart-shaped leaves is the most interesting
Good weekend
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Jan 21, 2012 2:11 PM CST
Hmmm, maybe I should just start them indoors the end of April and set them over one of heat registers for warmth?
Name: Julia
Upstate NY (Zone 6a)
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JuliaNY
Jan 21, 2012 2:56 PM CST
I tried to grow Moonflower this past season. The vines grew but no flowers. I think it was because I started them too late. This year I will start them indoors in April in the tall red cups and transplant out.
Will they transplant okay or are they fussy? Will they tolerate our May temp swings or just be careful with any frost?
Julia
Upstate NY
Zone 6
Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
For our friend, Shoe. Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Enjoys or suffers cold winters Birds Permaculture Container Gardener
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Horseshoe
Jan 21, 2012 4:41 PM CST
"Will they transplant okay or are they fussy? Will they tolerate our May temp swings or just be careful with any frost?"

They transplant extremely well. As for temperature swings they love warmth for best growing and flowering. If you set them out while it is still cool (air temp and ground temp) you're not giving them any kind of head start, they'll just sit there or grow extremely slow. It's best to time your seed starting so they germinate in warmth, get their true leaves then pot up to a bigger pot (or start them in your cups, Julia), then set out when conditions are right (warm air temps, warm ground temps).

There are 3 plants I MUST grow every year or my customers yell at me...Moonvine, Tithonia, and Sungold tomato plants. I've had a dedicated following for more years than I can remember who come each year and buy at least one moonvine, one tithonia, oftentimes buying more than one of each. Once you're hooked there ain't no turning back!

Shoe

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