Morning Glory, Ipomoea purpurea

Ipomoea purpurea, or as we all know it, Morning Glory, is native to tropical and subtropical America but has now naturalized all over North America. It reseeds easily, and in Florida some cultivars are considered invasive.

Some gardeners think that morning glory is an obnoxious weed. Others think of them as a lovely addition to the garden —— if kept in check. All morning glories produce attractive funnel-shaped blossoms of various shades of white, red, blue, purple, and yellow with heart shaped leaves. Most bloom from May until frost, opening in the morning and closing in the afternoon.

Morning glories are easy to grow and are great for containers with a trellis or placed in a hanging basket. They prefer full sun and will tolerate any kind of soil. Morning glories can be controlled by cutting the vine down before lots of seeds drop or by collecting the seeds before they fall.

The 2-inch flower slowly blooms and attract pollinators, butterflies, and hummingbirds. Members of the genus Ipomoea support the following specialized bees: Melitoma taurea and Cemolobus ipomoeae.

Don’t shy away from adding morning glories to your garden. They provide beautiful blooms to brighten up your morning. Be sure to look for seeds next spring.

Photos and information by Jeanne Pavero

North Carolina Extension Gardener Plant Toolbox