Moonflower Rising

Moonflower vine bloom (Ipomoea alba)

It’s been a rough season for my Moonflower vine (Ipomoea alba), with all the heavy rains early this summer nearly drowning it, the vine stayed thin and wispy until about August. I didn’t think it would ever grow, but by the end of September it took off and finally covered the Shepard hook I planted it on.

Now here we are in the middle of October and despite cool weather, it is covered in buds and finally starting to bloom. I think it’s too cool for it now though because the flowers are only coming one at a time and taking all night to open.

A moonflower vine is a night time flower, opening in the evening (usually they unfurl as you watch, being fully open within an hour or so) and fading by morning. They are very fragrant too, smelling like a gardenia. The humming bird moths love them!

Moonflowers are related to the morning glory and sweet potato vine but much better behaved and they don’t reseed prolifically like the morning glory does (at least here in zone 5). A definite plus in my garden!

This will be the last one though. There is a freeze expected tonight with temps all the way down to 31 degrees and it will kill the whole vine, but I’m happy I got to see it bloom! They are one of my favorite annual vines.

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