Could there be anything so easy to grow as a Morning Glory (Ipomoea)? Once a seed sprouts the vine will happily climb whatever structure it lies adjacent to whether it be a tree, shrub, trellis or post. It's not picky!
Of course there is the issue of Ipomoea invasiveness. Morning Glories are rapid growers and self seeding phenoms. They can quickly overtake trellises and arbors which makes them a good choice to use for an annual vine to cover your structures. Use them with care becasue they will spread. To help control your Morning Glory plant it in a pot then keep a watchful eye on where the vines travel. You could also pinch off the spent blooms before they go to seed. Another idea would be to collect the seed when the flowers turn into brown pods, then store the seeds so that you may put them where you want them and not where Ms. Ipomoea would like to grow.
If by some chance, OK really a 100% chance, you miss a few seeds and a new plant sprouts that you don't want in your garden pull it up quickly before the roots are too deep. They can be controlled with vigilance. This particular morning glory was transplanted into a pot from somewhere else in the yard. I made sure last fall to collect as much of the seed as I could and I've had very few seedlings appear.
As you can see I've been training our Morning Glory to grow around our front porch railing. As it grows I'll continue to weave the ends of the vines around the rails. Occasionally I'll pinch the growth tip to encourage more branching for thicker coverage.
The heart shaped leaves and light blue flowers of the Morning Glory can be a welcoming site to greet visitors to our home.
I've noticed that the hummingbirds seem to like sipping nectar from morning glories. Morning glories come in quite a few colors and are related to other plants like the moon flower which only blooms at night. The two blooms in the picture below are volunteer morning glories that are very common around our yard.
I know a lot of gardeners view morning glories as invasive weeds. I think of them more as invasive flowers. Fun to look at but in need of a watchful eye.
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Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Dave is the author of Growing The Home Garden and runs a small nursery business growing vegetables and herbs for local customers in Spring Hill, TN. (Blue Shed Gardens or FB page). He has written for gardening publications, Troy-Bilt and Lowe's and is available for edible garden consulting. Dave gardens organically and when he isn't writing, collecting seeds, or propagating plants he's parenting his 4 children as a stay at home dad.