Moonflower Planting Instructions


Moonflowers produce large white blooms on climbing vines. They only bloom in the evening and overnight. The flowers close once the morning light hits them. Each flower only blooms once before fading, but there are plenty of new buds to replace them each evening. Related to morning glories, moonflowers are pollinated by moths instead of butterflies and bees. The vines can reach as high as 18 feet and they twine around trellises, poles and any other structure they are planted near with minimal training.

Step 1

Start moonflower seeds indoors four weeks before the last expected frost date in your area. Soak the seeds overnight in warm water, then lightly scuff each seed with sandpaper before planting.

Step 2

Fill individual peat pots with potting soil. Sow seeds 1 inch deep in the center of each pot.

Step 3

Water each pot well. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm room to germinate, approximately seven to 14 days.

Step 4

Remove plastic wrap from pots as soon as the first sprouts appear. Move the pots to a window that receives at least six hours of sunlight a day and keep the soil moist but not soggy at all times.

Step 5

Transplant outdoors once all danger of frost has passed. Plant in a well-drained area with full to partial sunlight that is near a structure the plant can climb up, spacing plants 8 inches apart.

Step 6

Water only during extended dry periods. Moonflowers require little to no care once established.

Tips and Warnings

  • Moonflowers self seed but it might take years for the seeds to germinate on their own. Save seed pods as they develop to start indoors next year if you wish to start your own seeds. While few pests bother moonflowers, if there are signs of insect infestation treat immediately with an organic or chemical pesticide.

Things You'll Need

  • Sandpaper
  • Peat pots
  • Potting soil
  • Plastic wrap


  • University of Illinois Extension
  • University of Arkansas Extension
Keywords: growing moonflowers, planting vining flowers, night bloomers

About this Author

Jenny Harrington has been a freelance writer since 2006. Her published articles have appeared in various print and online publications. Previously, she owned her own business, selling handmade items online, wholesale and at crafts fairs. Harrington's specialties include small business information, crafting, decorating and gardening.