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silverfly's avatar

What is your experience with the plant: morning glory?

Asked by silverfly (4027 points ) June 9th, 2012

We recently purchased morning glory as a cover for our pergola (yet to be built) outside. The flowers are beautiful, but we were warned during purchase that it’s an agressive grower so it’s best to plant it in a large pot out of the grass to prevent it from spreading wildly.

Have any of you had experience with Morning Glory? Would you recommend it? Did you have any problems?

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14 Answers

dontmindme's avatar

I’ve always started my morning glories and moonflowers from seed in the ground. I like to combine the two on my trellis so I have the blue flowers in the morning and big, beautiful white flowers in the evening. The vine is quite aggressive, but I’ve never had a problem with them as long as I keep up with training.

From my experience I have found that it is a fairly easy plant to care for, especially if it is planted in the ground. I tried them in pots once but it was a pain to keep up with watering them. If you leave town for an extended period of time you will need someone to water them for you. I rarely need to water them when they are in the ground, unless we are having an unusually dry season.

bookish1's avatar

Beautiful flowers. Don’t eat the seeds :D

wildpotato's avatar

Morning glories used to be my favorite flowers. I moved into my current apartment three years ago, and the backyard was gross but covered in morning glories. How cool, I thought. Fast forward to now – evil bindweed, kill kill kill! They have oodles of seeds, and the seeds can germinate up to eight inches in the ground. We have to weed our lawn and garden about twice a day to keep up with them all. The ones we miss or can’t reach grow very quickly and are super aggressive; they love to wrap around our tomatoes. We are very, very slowly winning the battle – after three years. Also, they stink to high heaven in large numbers, sort of like acetone but greasier.

I still think their flowers are beautiful and very cool with their litmus paper quality, but maintain control and gather all the seedpods you see at the end of each season if you don’t want them to spread.

gailcalled's avatar

I like morning glories but they do only bloom in the morning.

A better choice for a pergola might be the clematis, Etoille Violette.

This is a beauty that blooms from June to Sept. in the right spot. It likes its feet in the shade and the foliage in the sun. Once established, it is effortless. Just prune a little occasionally. The new growth springs from what looks like dried and dead vines.

Morning glories best left to grow on weedy or brushy patches where you can let them spread.

If you want seeds from my sweet peas, that also run amok, remind me in the fall and I will mail them. They are very pretty and have a lovely fragrance, but do bloom only once, in high summer.

Bellatrix's avatar

If we are talking about the same species, they are considered an invasive weed in Australia. It has the potential to take over and smother other plants.

This is another site that talks about its ability to spread.

So, perhaps check your local gardening experts to see whether this plant has the same growth habits where you are.

gailcalled's avatar

@Bellatrix: True both in your country and in mine.

syz's avatar

Huh, it’s weird to me that someone would actually buy morning glory since it was always considered a weed when I was growing up. And they’re not that pretty, compared to some of the myriad other options available.

Bellatrix's avatar

@syz one man’s weed is another man’s flowers and all that….

I have an African Tulip Tree that I love but it is now considered a weed by local councils. It is quite a big tree and it was instrumental in helping us to decide to buy this house. The Cockatoos love it too.

gailcalled's avatar

@Bellatrix: That is truly spectacular. Weed trees have the advantage of not spreading a foot a day as the vines do.

Are the cockatoos native birds that fly around wild and willy-nilly? Lovely.

ratboy's avatar

One variety, Convolvulus arvensis, is classified as a noxious weed where I live—there can be legal consequences for people who fail to control it.

Some remarks from a local horticulturist:

“It’s more persistent and annoying than a telemarketer, and it’s probably the plant that inspired the “Body Snatcher” movies. Calling it “Morning Glory” is the work of a truly evil person.”

“In layman terms, this means the plant has the ability to send up 1,000 new plants right where you are trying to establish a flower bed or garden,” .... “As if this were not evil enough, this noxious weed also has the ability to produce thousands of seeds. To top it off, these seeds can lay dormant in the soil for up to 50 years before germinating.”

gailcalled's avatar

We have that variety, which we call “bindweed’ here in the NE US. When ripping it up, it can be coiled around your wrist and elbow like a lariat.

wilma's avatar

According to wikipedia there are over 100 varieties of Morning Glory plants.
I am familiar with bindweed and yes I do consider it a weed, but I do not consider the kind with big pretty flowers that I plant every summer, to be a weed.
I buy Seeds for the Heavenly Blue variety and they grow very nicely and are always easy to control. By the end of the summer I have lush vines growing up strings or a trellis and I love the pure blue flowers.
The first frost of the season kills the plant and I pull them down and throw them on the compost pile. This variety never reproduces from seed where I live and I have never considered them invasive.
I have had the pink and purple varieties and they have reproduced the next year from dropped seeds, but they are very easy to pull out and are always killed by frost.

digitalimpression's avatar

Morning glories are great. They grow very quickly and can make ordinary garden areas look quite a lot better. There were always morning glories surrounding our front yard on the fence when I was growing up.

DaphneT's avatar

Depends on your climate. I live in a USDA 5a location. We have one patch of morning glory planted in a tire planter, we mow the grass around that and they’ve never spread. They also won’t bloom till August most years.

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