(Note: this post is referring to *cultivated*
glories, which are not a problem in any area AFAIK. I'm
aware that there are wild morning glories that can be a
problem weed in some areas, but they are not the subject of
Frugal gardening tip: Morning glories have a high 'wow!
factor'. They give good value for the money and minimal
effort required, IMHO.
Here's what I've done this year: I bought two packets of
morning glory seeds, Star of Yelta, and Heavenly Blue.
The above is a good picture of the Star of Yelta, these are
such an intense color they appear luminescent.
Above are pictures of the Heavenly Blue, although pictures
don't really do it justice. The Heavenly Blue is a clear,
pure blue: I think it's the 'bluest' blue I've ever seen in
the flower world. Blue flowers are notorious for being
difficult to photograph (film cameras - I don't know if it
applies to digital cameras).
On April 20, I roughed up the large, very hard seeds with
sandpaper, and soaked them overnight in warm water. The
next morning I planted them in little 6-cell packs filled
with Pro-Mix - a mixture of peat moss, perlite, and top
soil: good for seed starting. (I used to buy specific seed
starting mix, but the Pro-Mix is much cheaper if you need
any quantity of it. There are many similar mixes available
at garden centers.)
When the seeds sprouted (a few days later) I put them under
our fluorescent seed-starting lights, indoors. They were
transplanted into 4" pots in a week or two, then outdoors
into 12" pots on the front porch - they're in mushroom-soil,
but any good potting soil or Pro-Mix would be fine - in that
case, you'd need to feed them occasionally. The
mushroom-soil is rich, so I won't need to give them plant
They went outdoors after danger of the last frost (May 31 in
I bought large dark blue-green pots at the local Dollar
Store - these match the dark blue-green flower boxes that
are also on the front porch and filled with petunias. I use
ugly big black pots (that we dumpster-dived) for veggies on
the deck in back, but for the decorative stuff in the front,
I wanted something a bit nicer. Our house is white, with
blue-green shutters and trim, so the blue-green pots look
very good on the front porch.
The morning glory pots are sitting by the pillars that hold
up the front porch, so they can climb up the pillars.
We had a terribly wet, very cool spring: almost no sun at
all in June. The poor morning glories just sort of sat
there, stunned, until the last week of June.
Before putting them in their pots on the porch, I had wound
twine around the pillars, to help them climb, duct-taping it
on the top and bottom to hold it in place. It turns out
that this wasn't necessary - they're pretty much ignoring
the twine and just climbing up the pillars wherever they
The morning glories really took off as soon as the weather
got hot and sunny, and the Star of Yelta is now blooming.
The Star has been faster and sturdier than the Heavenly
Blues at every point in their development, btw, but the
Blues are also climbing up the pillar nicely now, and I
expect them to be blooming soon.
When I lived in Delaware, I lived in a little apartment with
big, south-facing windows in the bedroom and living room. I
tied twine to bricks on the ground in front of the windows,
and to nails in the (fairly wide) roof overhang, and had a
living curtain of greenery with gorgeous blossoms all summer
to shade my apartment. I also did this with yard-long
Morning-glories are an easy plant to grow and - to me at
least - they have a very high 'Wow! factor' because of the
gorgeous colors in the blossoms - they seem to glow from
within. And because they will climb up trellises, fences,
pillars, mailboxes, etc. They can also be used for a ground
cover, but the 'Wow! factor' is higher when they are