Moonflower Gardening

Overview

Moonflower is a twining vine that is also commonly known as moon vine and moonflower vine. The vigorous plant is part of the morning glory (Convolvulaceae) family, and is scientifically referred to as Ipomoea alba. In extremely hot weather conditions, moonflowers grow very rapidly. The plants are usually tropical perennials, however, in colder climates they are often also used as annual vines.

Soil

Moonflowers thrive in soil that is well-drained and relatively rich. The soil must be maintained moist until the germination process begins. After germination, it is essential to water moonflowers as necessary. Organic compost, such as mushroom compost, is beneficial, as it encourages the vigor of the plant. Full or partial sun is preferable for moonflower cultivation.

Geography

Moonflower should be grown in the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) plant hardiness zones of between nine and 11. Although the tender plant is generally a tropical perennial, its extremely rapid rate of growth permits it to be an annual in regions that have significantly cooler climates.

Moisture

Moonflower flourishes in soil that is relatively moist, but not excessively moist. Soil that is soggy is undesirable for growing moonflower. The plant is able to tolerate short dry periods.

Propagation

Moonflower can be propagated via seed, or through rooting runners from older vines. Before starting the propagation process, it is important to soak the seeds. However, some of the seeds will begin germination either way. For germination to work well, make sure that the soil is warm.

Maintenance

Moonflowers are relatively easy to maintain in gardening, due to the fact that they grow rapidly when offered just a small amount of support. It is vital not to over-water moonflower vines, as that could result in excessive leaves and not enough flowers.

Keywords: moonflower gardening, moonflower growing, Ipomoea alba gardening

About this Author

Isabel Prontes is a freelance writer and traveler residing in Manhattan, NY. She has traveled to five continents and counting. Her work has appeared on a number of websites, such as Travels, eHow.com and "Happy Living Magazine." Prontes has a professional background in public relations; she received a bachelor's degree in communication studies from Pace University.