Moonflower, Ipomoea

Full Moon Blossoming

There is something about the dim silvery soft light in a dark sky that has inspired many a poem, picture and ponder of the cosmos. But us humans are not the only organisms transfixed by a Full Moon, Mother Nature already has a tribe of Full Mooners that prefer to shine during this particular phase of the lunar cycle in particular.  

There are the doodlebugs that dig bigger holes around Full Moon time. There are species that like to take it up a notch in the romance department with some owl species increasing the volume on their mating call and puffing up their feathers under the brighter light of the Full Moon. This is the favoured moon phase for certain coral species to spawn and for one particular scrubby shrub called Ephedra Foeminea this is the only time it likes to release its pollen.

Not liking things too shabby, we simply love the Moonflower which blossoms only under the light of a Full Moon. She is a deliciously scented climber whose vines wrap not just around the garden fence or a tree but our hearts also as she literally unfolds her spectacular white bloom during warm summer Full Moon nights releasing the sweetest of aromas carried on a warm summer breeze. And when she gives her life over after bloom she continues to leave her loving imprint with her leaves which resemble gorgeous little love hearts.

As if we need further enticing outdoors on a Full Moon eve, the moonflower brings an ethereal magic to the garden at night along with other nocturnal loving creatures and animals. Our faves of course being those with an ancient and symbolic connection to the moon – the fox, the owl, the hare. All these furry moon icons are a part of the Living the Luna Life family and you will see them pop up on all manner of Living the Luna Life goodies.

© 2018 Danielle Rickwood

How to grow Moonflowers by Julie Roberts

Step 1

Nick the moonflower seeds with a rasp or file to break through the seed coat, and soak the seeds overnight in warm water.

Step 2

Install a strong trellis in a prepared bed that receives no less than 4 to 6 hours of sunlight daily. The trellis should be at least 6 feet tall to support the growth of the vines. Choose an area with rich, loamy soil that drains well and has a slightly acidic pH of about 5.5 to 6.5.

Step 3

Plant the moonflower seeds about 1/2 inch deep along the trellis, gently covering them with a thin layer of soil. Keep the soil slightly moist until the seeds germinate.

Step 4

Water the seedlings so moisture reaches the roots but does not completely saturate the soil. As the seedlings grow, thin them to about 12 inches apart. Reduce watering frequency to once a week when the vines are established.

Step 5

Spread a 1- to 2-inch layer of mulch or organic compost around the vines, keeping it at least 1 inch away from the base of the plants. Leaves, newspaper or cardboard works well to keep weeds down.

Step 6

Fertilize the vines once a month with 1 teaspoon of a general-purpose liquid fertilizer mixed with 1 gallon of water, which will cover a 10-square-foot area. This feeding schedule is not necessary if the vines are healthy and growing strong.

Step 7

Deadhead or remove the spent blooms if you don’t want the plants to self-seed. If you want to collect the seeds, slip a small paper bag over the end of a stem that contains a dying flower and secure the bag with a twist tie. As the seed pod grows and bursts, the bag will catch the seeds.

 

Buy Seeds here.

No Comments

Post A Comment