Morning glories, scientifically called Ipomoea, are stunning flowering plants renowned for their vibrant hues and remarkable climbing capabilities. Although commonly cultivated outdoors, it’s entirely feasible to nurture and tend to morning glories indoors, granted you establish the optimal conditions.
Come explore our comprehensive guide on successfully cultivating and caring for morning glory plants indoors! Those that do will be rewarded with beautiful flowers that brighten up any room.
Select the Right Plants
There are hundreds of plants under the “Morning Glory” name and not all of them are suitable for indoor growth. Choosing a good variety is an important first step both from a gardening and aesthetic perspective.
The first thing to look out for is “dwarf” varieties. These are bred to be more compact and will tend to grow better in containers and indoors in general.
Varieties, such as ‘Heavenly Blue’ and ‘Pearly Gates’, are popular choices known for their splendid blossoms. These delightful cultivars possess all the charm of their larger counterparts while maintaining a manageable size.
By carefully selecting the right variety, you can enjoy the enchanting allure of morning glories without overwhelming your indoor environment. The right choice of morning glory plant will enhance your space while also accommodating your indoor gardening goals.
Container and Soil
When you’re selecting a container for your indoor morning glory, opt for a spacious one that allows for good drainage. This way, any excess water can escape easily, preventing the roots from getting waterlogged and avoiding the dreaded root rot. Morning glories don’t need a huge container, something about 10” across is large enough to start with.
And don’t forget to pick a potting mix that drains well! Look for a high-quality blend that’s chock-full of organic matter. It’ll give your morning glory the right nutrients and allow for proper airflow around the roots.
Keep in mind that morning glories prefer slightly acidic to neutral soil, with a pH level between 6.0 and 7.0. By nailing the container and soil combo, you’re setting the stage for your indoor morning glory to flourish like a champ.
Morning Glory Lighting
When it comes to lighting for your indoor morning glory plant, providing the right amount of sunlight is crucial for its growth and flowering. Morning glories are sun-loving plants and thrive in bright conditions. So, it’s best to position your container near a sunny south-facing window where it can soak up the natural sunlight.
If your indoor space lacks sufficient natural light, don’t worry! You can supplement the lighting with artificial sources. Fluorescent or LED grow lights are excellent alternatives that provide the necessary light spectrum for plant growth. Simply position the lights above your morning glory plant, ensuring they are at the right distance to prevent heat damage or leaf burn.
Keep in mind that morning glories need about six to eight hours of direct sunlight each day. If you’re using artificial lights, you’ll want to mimic this duration by leaving the lights on for the appropriate amount of time. I also like to leave my grow lights on for an extra 2-3 hours to help offset the difference in natural vs. artificial light. Timers can be helpful in automating the lighting schedule and ensuring consistency.
When it comes to watering your indoor morning glory plant, striking the right balance is key. You want to keep the soil consistently moist, but avoid drowning those delicate roots. It’s all about finding that sweet spot!
To determine when it’s time to water, pay attention to the top inch of the soil. When it starts feeling dry to the touch, it’s a clear indicator that your morning glory is thirsty and in need of a drink. However, don’t get too hung up on following a strict watering schedule. Remember, factors like temperature, humidity, and pot size can affect your plant’s water requirements.
To gauge your morning glory’s thirst level, indulge in a fun soil finger dance. If the surface feels drier than a desert, it’s a clear sign it’s gasping for hydration. Now, here’s the real secret: target the plant’s base, sidestepping any soggy rendezvous with the foliage, and make sure you’re getting into the soil.
Don’t forget to give your container some exit strategy! It’s crucial to have those drainage holes in place, ensuring a speedy escape for any excess water. Do this and you’ll steer clear of any unfortunate scenarios resembling a soggy mess or root rot disasters. So, let the water flow and keep those roots in the clear!
Supply the Proper Temperature and Humidity
The success of growing morning glories indoors depends on getting the temperature and humidity just right. These amazing plants love warmth, so aim for temperatures between 70 and 85 F. While they can handle slightly cooler conditions, it’s best to give them the ideal temperature range for optimal growth.
To create the perfect environment, position your morning glory container near a sunny window that faces south. This way, they’ll soak up plenty of sunlight, which not only provides the necessary light but also helps maintain the warmth they crave.
If natural light is lacking, don’t worry! You can turn to fluorescent or LED grow lights to give your plants the supplemental light they need. These artificial lights work wonders in providing both warmth and illumination for your morning glories.
Now, let’s talk about humidity. Morning glories appreciate a moderate level of humidity, typically ranging from 40 to 60 percent. Luckily, maintaining this humidity range indoors isn’t too complicated. However, if you live in a dry climate or have central heating that sucks moisture from the air, you may need to take a few extra steps to boost humidity.
Here’s a neat trick you can try for your morning glories: place a shallow tray filled with water near your plants. As the water evaporates, it works like magic to boost the humidity in the air around them. These are often called “pebble trays” as many will add decorative pebbles to them.
Another quick option is to bring in a humidifier and set it up nearby. This little gadget adds moisture to the air and creates the perfect cozy atmosphere for your morning glories to thrive.
Furnish with a Strong Support Structure
When it comes to providing a support structure for your indoor morning glory plant, it’s important to consider their natural climbing behavior. Morning glories are inclined to vine and reach for support as they grow. By offering a sturdy structure for them to cling onto, you can encourage their upward growth and prevent them from sprawling or tangling.
There are a few options you can explore to create a suitable support structure. One common choice is a trellis, which consists of a framework of vertical and horizontal bars or wires.
Trellises can be made of various materials, such as wood, metal, or even plastic. Ensure that the trellis is of an appropriate size to accommodate the potential height and spread of your morning glory plant.
Another option is using stakes, which are long, slender supports that can be placed into the potting mix alongside the plant. Stakes are particularly useful for smaller pots or if you prefer a simpler support system. You can tie the vines gently to the stakes as they grow, guiding them upwards. Stakes are often very inexpensive as well making them great for keeping to a budget.
Be careful when adding trellis or stakes to existing plants. You want to avoid damaging the roots as you insert the support into the soil, so do so slowly.
Regardless of the type of support structure you choose, it’s essential to position it securely in the container, ensuring stability and preventing it from toppling over. Morning glories can become quite weighty as they mature and establish their climbing patterns, so a stable support system is necessary to prevent damage to the plant or its surroundings.
Remember to be gentle when training the vines onto the support structure. As the morning glory plant grows, gently guide the vines towards the support, encouraging them to wrap around it. Avoid forcefully bending or twisting the vines, as this may cause damage or breakage.
Feeding your morning glory with a well-balanced, water-soluble fertilizer is an important step for optimal growth. Seek out a fertilizer that’s got the perfect combo of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) in equal proportions. This magical mix is like a supercharged feast for your plant, giving it the fuel it needs to sprout roots, flourish in every way, and unleash its magnificent floral display.
When it’s time to fertilize, make sure to give the instructions on the packaging a good read. Dilute the fertilizer in water following the recommended ratio, and then gently pour it onto the soil around the base of your morning glory. This way, as the water seeps in, the plant’s roots can gradually soak up those essential nutrients.
Remember, there’s no need to go overboard with the fertilizer. Too much of a good thing can actually be harmful. Stick to the recommended frequency, usually every two to four weeks during the active growing season, which is from spring to summer. Adjust the schedule if the fertilizer manufacturer suggests something different.
Keep Your Plant in Shape
You can totally shape your plant to your liking by selectively removing certain parts. This technique helps achieve a compact and bushy growth pattern, which is often what people aim for. All you need to do is pinch off the growing tips of the vines at your desired height. This encourages the plant to branch out and become fuller, giving it a tidy and appealing look.
Pruning also comes with the added bonus of getting rid of any dead or yellowing leaves and spent flowers. These not-so-pretty bits not only take away from the overall charm but can also attract pests and diseases. By swiftly removing them, you’ll help your morning glory plant stay vibrant and avoid potential issues.
Pruning morning glories indoors is a piece of cake. Just grab some clean and sharp pruning shears or scissors and carefully snip away the unwanted parts. Make sure to cut just above a leaf node or where the stem connects to another stem. This technique encourages new growth and keeps the plant healthy.
Remember, moderation is key when it comes to pruning. Avoid going overboard with trimming as it can weaken the plant or hinder flower production. Aim for a balanced approach that maintains the natural beauty of the morning glory while keeping its growth in check.
Watch Out for Pests and Diseases
When it comes to pests and diseases, morning glories grown indoors are generally resilient and less susceptible compared to outdoor plants. However, it’s always good to be aware of potential issues and take preventive measures.
Keep an eye out for sneaky invaders like aphids, spider mites, or whiteflies. These minuscule critters can cause damage by sucking the sap from the leaves and stems. If you notice tiny insects congregating on your plant, gently wipe them off with a soft cloth or use a mild solution of soapy water to deter them.
Too much water can be a breeding ground for nasty fungal diseases like powdery mildew or root rot. Powdery mildew likes to show off as a fancy white powdery coating on the leaves, while root rot turns your plant’s roots into a soggy, sad mess. So, go easy on the watering to avoid these unwelcome guests wreaking havoc on your morning glory party.
It’s actually quite simple to combat fungal diseases. Simply ensure proper drainage, avoid waterlogging, and provide good air circulation around the plant.
Propagate When You Can
There are primarily three common methods to propagate morning glories and these are by seed, stem, and layering. Let’s explore which one suits you best.
This is the most popular and straightforward method. Morning glory plants produce numerous seeds within their attractive seed pods. These seeds can be collected and stored for future propagation.
Soaking the seeds in water overnight before planting can enhance germination rates. Once soaked, plant the seeds in a suitable potting mix, keep the soil consistently moist, and provide the necessary light and warmth for germination.
Morning glories can actually be propagated from stem cuttings, not just seeds! It’s pretty simple too. All you have to do is find a nice, healthy stem on an existing plant that’s about four to six inches long.
Trim off the lower leaves and stick that bad boy in a container filled with well-draining potting mix. Keep the soil nice and moist, and make sure the cutting gets some bright but indirect light. Before you know it, you’ll see roots forming and a new plant sprouting up.
Layering involves encouraging a stem from an existing morning glory plant to develop roots while still attached to the parent plant. To do this, select a healthy, low-growing stem and gently wound the section where you want roots to form.
Bury the wounded section of the stem in a shallow trench or container filled with moist soil, leaving the tip of the stem exposed. Keep the soil moist and provide the necessary light. Once roots have developed, you can cut the stem from the parent plant and transplant it as a separate individual.
Growing Morning Glories Indoors
With a little love and care, your morning glory plant will flourish into a vibrant beauty, showering you with its breathtaking blooms. So, grab your plant, let your imagination run wild, and prepare to be amazed as your morning glory thrives!
Morning Glory FAQ
Are Morning Glories Annuals?
It depends on the variety as some are and some aren’t. The climate also affects this as those grown in areas that get freezing temperatures will tend to be annuals and not survive the winter. Grown indoors, however, we can often get perennial growth patterns.
Do Morning Glories Stay Open All Day?
As their name suggests, morning glory flowers are open in the morning but will close later in the day. They’ll generally flower throughout the entire summer.
Are Morning Glories High Maintenance?
No, morning glories are a low-maintenance flower. Make sure to give them proper sun and water, and they’ll tend to grow without much more care than that. Fertilizing and pruning can help, but many report success neglecting these two areas.