Saturday, August 25, 2012

Ipomoea alba.......Moon Flower

Ipomoea alba, sometimes called the moonflower or moon vine, belonging to the family Convolvulaceae, is a species of night-blooming morning glory, native to tropical and subtropical regions of the New World, from northern Argentina north to Mexico and Florida.

 It also grows extremely well in a corner of the sub-tropical garden here at Cortijo Azahar.  It will eventually, exotically, grow over and cover the pergola over the new garden daybed/anytime bed.

Ipomoea alba is a perennial, herbaceous liana growing to a height of 5-30 m tall with twining stems.  
The white flowers are fragrant and large, 8-14 cm diameter. They open quickly in the evening and last through the night, remaining open until touched by the morning sun. On overcast days, the blossoms may remain open for longer. The flowers also tend to remain open longer on cooler days as we head into autumn. The name moonflower derives from their blooming in the evening and their being round in shape like a full moon.

Moon flower is invasive and the seeds are poisonous if ingested is a thing of beauty.  Watching the flowers burst open just before sunset is quite magical  and the delicate perfume of each flower, multiplied by so many as the daylight fades, fills the senses and is pure eroticism.