To be honest, growing moonflowers in my cool climate isn't easy. I tried for several years before I had success. However, moonflowers are definitely worth the trouble of growing them.
Before growing moonflower vines there are a few things you should know. The seeds are poisonous and this vine can become a noxious invader or an invasive in certain areas of the country. It is also a self-seeder, so if you don't want it to return next year, pick off the spent flowers so they don't form seed pods. Also, these are huge and vigorous vines that can grow 8-10 feet, so will need a large trellis.
Producing large, spectacular white flowers as the sun goes down, or sometimes on cloudy days, moonflowers are perfect to grow in an outdoor eating area, or near a bedroom window, where their fragrance can sweeten the night air.
Moonflowers have large, beautiful, heart-shaped leaves that grow on vigorous vines, reaching eight feet or higher. The flowers are huge, around six inches long and three to six inches at the widest part. Iridescent white, the flowers are trumpet shaped and spectacular.
Grow moonflowers with morning glories for spectacular display all day and night.
A couple of keys to growing moonflowers successfully:
- If you live in a colder climate start seeds early. Plant indoors, under lights, approximately four weeks before night time temperatures are reliably greater than 50 °F.
- Soak seeds in warm water for four to eight hours before you plant them .
- Start seeds in plantable pots (peat or Cow Pots work well), because the roots don't like to be disturbed. That said, I have bought moonflower seedlings in plastic pots and have transplanted them successfully.
- Once night time temperatures have reached 50°F, plant seedlings (or if you live in a warmer climate, you can direct sow your seeds) in a large pot. You want soil that is well drained, but doesn't have too much fertilizer. If there is too much fertilizer, you will get lots of leaves, but not many flowers.
- Place your container in full sun.
- Keep soil moist.
To buy moonflower seeds: Renee's Garden