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Mr. Smarty Plants - Should <i>Ipomea alba</i> be planted in a yard in Spring, TX?

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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.

 

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