Ahhh, I love these! For years we have grown these beautiful Moonflowers around the back patio. If you have followed this blog, you may have noticed by now that almost everything we grow is pretty much care free. The Moonflowers self-sow each year and love the central Illinois climate. We never have to water them. All we have to do is prune them back, as they will quickly spread. They even choke out most of the weeds.
Moonflowers are a Datura and are poisonous. Like anything poisonous, it's not a problem unless you ingest it. Touching the plant doesn't cause a rash, but I do avoid as much direct contact as much as possible. I always shower and wash thoroughly anyway after any kind of gardening, because of allergies. Visitors are warned that they are poisonous and I would never allow children unattended around them. The dog, cats, and barnyard fowl aren't interested at all in the plant. The Moonflowers do seem to attract hummingbirds and large moths. Someone recently commented on this blog that some of the most beautiful plants are toxic--so true!
As pretty as they are, the Moonflower blooms only last a day (or should I say a night). It seems like for every bloom that dies two or more will appear. If it is sunny, they will not open wide during the day. Usually in the daytime, the blooms are just a tight rolled up flower about six or more inches long.
At night, the Moonflowers are at their blooming peak and have a bright white glow to them. It is quite a sight.
I found this video on YouTube of a similar variety of Moonflower. Ours are a bit larger and more of a trumpet shaped bloom. They really do bloom quickly though!