Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - April 23, 2012

From: Spring, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Vines
Title: Should Ipomea alba be planted in a yard in Spring, TX?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

I would like to know if there is any reason not to plant Tropical Morning glory (Moon Flower-Ipomoea alba)in my yard. Is it toxic or aggressivley invasive? I am looking at a space in my side yard with a western exposure. It will have medium shade and plenty of water. What about on a tree rather than a fence? Thanks,

ANSWER:

Moon Flower Ipomoea alba (Tropical white morning glory) is a fast-growing, vigorous, twining vine that is a member of the morning glory family (Convolvulaceae). It isn’t considered invasive, but two other members of the family  that are considered invasive are Bind Weed and Swamp Morning Glory.

The Moon Flower blooms at night which adds a mystic touch to the plant, and this Floridata link suggests that it might be called the evening glory. (images)

Several members of the family are said to have seeds containing toxins/hallucinogens , but Ipomea tricolor is the only species that I could find on a poisonous plants list.

The plant can grow in full to partial sun, and can grow along a fence or on a trellis. I would not have it grow on a tree because its dense growth can shade the tree leaves and and interfere with growth. Besides, the beautiful flowers would be up in the tree instead of closer to the ground where they can be enjoyed.

So I think there’s no compelling reason not to plant the Moon Flower, and I would grow it on an arbor or trellis beside the deck where one could sit in the evening and take in the fragrance of the gorgeous blooms.

 

More Vines Questions

How to prune wild mustang grape vines.
July 11, 2011 - Now that my mustang grapes are harvested. When can I trim them out of the tree top and redirect them to an arbor where I can reach them next year? The main vine is at least 3" across. The vines from...
view the full question and answer

Looking for a supplier for Mustang Grape vine in Austin, TX>
April 02, 2012 - I'm looking for a supplier in Austin that will have a Mustang Grape Vine seed or plant for purchase. I found Natives of Texas in Kerrville, but if you know of a supplier in Austin, that would be pre...
view the full question and answer

Edibility of peppervine berries from Madison MS
February 09, 2012 - I am following up on a question I've posed to many well experienced foragers and naturalists regarding the pepper vine plant or Ampelopsis arbor. There are many conflicting stories regarding the edib...
view the full question and answer

Are vines harmful to bricks and mortar?
July 09, 2010 - I am really fond of native vines such as crossvine, coral honeysuckle, American wisteria and carolina jessamine. I love the look of vines on walls and I would like to add this to a landscape design. ...
view the full question and answer

Identification of a wild vine in East Texas
December 17, 2010 - Trying to identify a wild vine that grow 15-20 feet up our trees. The leaves are dark, glossy green about 2-3" long. The edges are smooth and elongated. Each leaf is placed to the right and then the ...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.