Slow Growing Moonflower - Knowledgebase Question

Colton, CA
Avatar for rs14
Question by rs14
August 24, 1999
Several months ago I planted moonflowers from seed. They took an extremely long time to germinate, but they finally germinated a couple of months after planting. They are now small vines (about 4-6ft.) that are growing extremely slow. A few days ago the vine bloomed, but only with one very large flower. Why is my vine growing so slowly?

Answer from NGA
August 24, 1999
Moonflower is Ipomoea and you're right, the seeds can be difficult to germinate. The plants do not like to be transplanted, so if you've moved them, they are probably taking their own sweet time to adjust. During this adjustment time they won't put on much growth. Moonflower grows best in full sunshine and will tolerate dry soil but thrive in moist, loose soil that is not too high in nitrogen, with a pH level of 6.0 - 7.5. Make sure your plant is in full sunshine and don't fertilize (you'll only annoy it!). Check the pH of the soil to make sure it's not too alkaline (above 7.5), nor too acid (below 6.0). Moonflowers are more successful where temperatures are warm and they should bloom summer through early autumn if conditions are right.
Hope the above helps you determine why your plant is reluctant to grow and bloom!

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