Moonflower: Worth the Wait

Moonflowers – they have been in my family for years. They bloom only at night and some of the blooms can be saucer size. If a full moon is out, these flowers absolutely glow. It’s incredible. They only last one night, then they droop down, until the bloom falls off. It’s kind of sad. They have their one night of glory.

My mom gave me Moonflowers many moons ago (heh). They were planted under the dining room window and bloomed beautifully for several seasons; until I moved from my garden oasis. I kept meaning to get more from her, but never had a spot that I wanted to cultivate at the rented duplex. I knew they would be left again, so why bother.

That’s why last year when I was admiring the many gorgeous blooms at Calloway’s, I notice a lone plant on a table. It had grayish green leaves that I recognized. The Moonflower. I could not BELIEVE it. I had never seen one at a plant store. My mom had them and my second mother-in-law had them. No one knew where they got theirs though. They just were. As far as my mom knew, she had dug them up from a railroad track. My second mother-in-law guessed her husband’s deceased wife had planted theirs. The night he died, every bud flowered. Every single one. So yes, I think she had planted them too.

Last year I planted it at Jason’s, outside the dining room window. The Calloway’s Moonflower grew and bloomed. It was beautiful. I almost killed it giving it TOO much love because I wanted it to do well, so badly. But I didn’t. It bloomed night after night. Then, as winter descended so it did too, into the ground to await spring. However, at springtime, I watched to see what would or wouldn’t come back. Anxiously awaiting the Moonflower, but there was no sign of it.

I was so disappointed! I had seen several large seed pods that went to ground and got rained on. They always came back, always, but it didn’t. No sign at all. Until…..late, late, late spring – well summer (especially in Texas). I saw the leaves and there she was. A baby of a thing, but growing.

I did my obsessive thing – willing it taller and stronger – almost killing it with Rosemary organic spray because some bug was chewing on its leaves. Apparently Moonflowers leaves get burned by Rosemary spray. Oops. I left it alone. I thought it was a goner, and there were no other budding plants in sight. I looked at Colloway’s for a replacement, but not one existed.

I grieved a little. Then a wondrous thing happened.

The plant I almost killed prevailed.

Buds grew.

A bloom appeared.

Awaiting nightfall with great anticipation.

Opening to the night.

Last night was my first Moonflower bloom of the year, and the reason for my feel good Friday post. I don’t know what it is about this flower that means so much to me, but it does. It’s my mom, it’s my step-father-in-law who was a tremendously sweet man, it’s the glowing moon that I adore. It’s the unique rareness. It’s the light in nights. It’s me. It’s my journey to start over. To grow again and again at a new place. To be found, to be treasured…….. to be home.

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34 thoughts on “Moonflower: Worth the Wait

    1. Thanks Terre, I took that one from above. It stands straight up, then slowly lowers down the next morning. I actually took the full bloom shots this morning. It’s hard to get the bloom since it only opens at night and I didn’t want to use a flash. You can see it’s already drifting half down in my morning photos. Really cool flower.

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  1. My best friend has them and they grow like crazy for her. I tried two years in a row with no success. Down here you can get seed packets at the True Value hardware store.

    They sure are beautiful and the smell is awesome.

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    1. Heather- All the seeds I have found in the store were for the Moonflower vine, which is a sister to the Morning Glory. I haven’t see the plant ones like these before. Those vines are madness. I had morning glories once on an arch, grew those from seeds, and they went UP the arch into the Pistachio tree. It was heck keeping them on the arch and out of the pretty tree. I swore never again. LOL!

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    1. Ellen, I saw them once more at a house behind Jason’s mom’s Church – the same kind. My mom’s returned late this year too, so it wasn’t just mine. Now I have about 6 baby plants in the yard. I made Jason flag them so he wouldn’t mow them down so I can transplant them and give them away. Maybe, I can get some seeds for you.

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  2. Thanks for visiting my blog! πŸ™‚ My mom had a moonflower a couple of summers ago…she loved it. Such a neat flower that blooms in a matter of seconds. She actually was able to catch it on video!

    Have a great weekend!

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  3. Oh, Angelia. It was so worth the wait, wasn’t it? I’ve heard about them for years, way a while back, from my grandmother. Never had one, though. Amazing. And to have a flower that blooms at night. Such a modest work of God’s.
    Bless you, sweetie.
    Hope you and yours are staying cool…..and hydrated (with no added squirmy ingredients)
    Weezer

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  4. Beautiful! Isn’t it funny how we associate certain plants with certain peaople, or times in our lives, or emotions? I’m glad this one gives you so much joy!

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  5. WAIT!!! I know this plant and never knew what it was! I see them growing wild here, along the bike path. I thought they were related to eggplants because they look very much like the plant and flower of an eggplant. I haven’t ever seen one open because DUH I don’t go on the bike path at night. But now I might have to!!!

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  6. I saw a picture of one of these (I think), and it was yellow. Do they come in yellow? But, I didn’t know what it was. Are you saying they actually bloom at night? That is very intriguing. Great pictures, as usual.

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  7. I’ve never heard of Moon Flowers either and I was thinking that the bloom looked like a morning glory so I guess they are from the same family? Beauyiful plant and beautiful story.

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  8. We have a moon flower plant that we planted around the time we got married. They really are so beautiful. Kind of scary b/c they attract some crazy Okie bees! We tried to dig it out (for the kids and stuff) but they keep coming back. I really do love them though.

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  9. Love the moon flower plants! About the only thing in the plant family I’ve been able to keep alive lately are some gerbera daisies my hubby brought home from Costco. And they came with this cool little “keep your plant alive” packet of plant food. I’m pretty sure I’m in some deep doodoo when that thing runs out. πŸ™‚
    Mindy
    http://www.thesuburbanlife.com

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  10. Holy canolis… you just gave me complete gooseybumps with this story! Great post.

    and btw… I love to plant plants… but I always end of killing them… and when I kill plants… they never seem to revive themselves. Luckily I married a man w/ a bit more of a green thumb than I. LOL

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