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Morning Glories

Monday, October 26, 2009

This was the view out our raised deck sliders all summer. Oh, I miss it so. When you can have color like this for practically nothing, why wouldn't you have a few planters out every window? We do!

This spring, I planted eight seeds in a little plastic eight-pack. Four were moonflowers, and four were Morning Glories, "Heavenly Blue" variety. They all came up, but the moonflowers never were able to shed their seed coats; the cotyledons rotted inside. The same thing happened to three of the morning glories. It was too darn wet for them, raining and raining, and morning glories and moonflowers hate wet feet. But the fourth morning glory survived, and when it got its first true leaf I planted that little plant down below our deck and watered it now and then.

It writhed around on the ground for awhile, throwing out tendrils, and then took a hint in the form of a trellis and began twining up, up, up.

The kids really didn't notice it until it started peeking up over the deck railing. At about that time it started blooming from the bottom up.

And Phoebe and Liam would go out every morning and count the blossoms. One, five, eight, 17, too many to count. They'd run back in with today's count. I miss that, too, now that they're getting up in the dark to go to school. We would go out into the back yard by Liam's willow just to gaze on it, this tower of flowers.
All from a single seed.

Plants give us so much, if we let them into our world.


Lovely post--I really have a thing for vines because I love to watch the way some twist their way up a support and others use tendrils. Have you tried other Ipomeas like Cardinal Climber or Cypress Vine--smaller flowers than the morning glories but great for attracting hummingbirds. I had both this summer and once they got to the top of some ornamental tripods I had in the garden my daughter suggested tying some string between them and a nearby pine tree, so that by the end of the summer we had a lovely arbor plus red flowers at the top of the pine tree! I think I'll be dealing with lots of volunteer seedlings in the spring but I don't really see that as a problem!

You touch on a good point, Deb. I've heard that cardinal climber reseeds and I am heartily suspicious of Ipomeas that reseed. Having been taken over by trumpet creeper at one point I know well the immense power of vines. (as wisteria eats our east hilltop). Let me know if you have a problem with reseeding. I'd love to try it but not if it's going to be a thug.

I think the cardinal climber can be a real problem in frost-free areas but here in Ohio the seeds that sprout in the summer/fall (and I have had a lot of those this year)are zapped in winter. My past experience has been that those that come up in spring pretty much stay in the garden area where the parent plant is (as opposed to being dispersed by birds or the wind) and are easy to either yank or transplant to where I want them. When I pulled the plants this fall I did keep them out of the compost to avoid spreading the seeds to other areas in the spring.

I love Morning Glories too, but this summer they didn't do too well. The Nasturtiums on the other hand went crazy and wound their way all over the garden.Next spring no doubt there will be many 'volunteers'.

My "Grandpa Ott's" were 14 feet tall/long this year. The deer ate all the lower leaves, but Grandpa didn't care, he just kept blooming right up till the 13 degree temperatures one night in early October. I have only ever planted him once, volunteer grandkids grow up the deck railing every summer. We did the string thing like DebM, just to see how far it would go.

Oh, just look at that vision! So very beautiful Julie. :c)

I have a ridiculously soft spot for morning glories, although I have planted many a dud, and drowned a batch last year. Sniffle, sniffle.

When I was growing up we spent about an hour before the bus arrived at our bus stop, playing tag and mother may I and sliding around on the little pond across the street. There were 8 or 9 of us there each day and we got to be a close little neighborhood gang before we got too old and 'cool' to associate with each other so much. I loved the first day of school (nerd at heart that I am) and we took lots of pictures. I can always remember how much I loved the special outfit I was wearing in each year's photos, and the big red mailbox on the corner where my neighbor's Mom always planted Heavenly Blue morning glories. Heavenly indeed.

Thanks for the great post and the walk down memory lane.

Julie, your morning glory photos inspire me to try them again. Back in '60-something I planted them all around the back of the very first house we bought, a little rectangular shingled job. The morning glories were wonderful, except that they had twined around, behind, inside the shingles, and I had to pull the plugs. Oops. I thought never again, but never's too long a time for something that beautiful.

Posted by Rosemary Lombard October 31, 2009 at 10:02 PM
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