The bush morning glory, scientifically known as Ipomoea Ieptophylla [ip-oh-MEE-a, lep-toh-FIL-uh], is a flowering plant species in the Convolvulaceae family often found along roadsides.
The flowering shrub is native to western and central Mediterranean regions of Southern Europe.
It is a woody perennial and a small evergreen shrub, belonging to Ipomoea (a morning glory genus).
Bush morning glory has a few common names which are as follows:
- Bush moonflower
Other Ipomoea plants include:
- Ornamental sweet potato vine (Ipomoea batatas)
- Firecracker vine (Ipomoea lobata)
- Moonflower vine (Ipomoea Alba)
Ipomoea Ieptophylla Care
Size and Growth
Bush morning glory is a gorgeous shrub with silver bush foliage color.
It is a neat, thick plant, with a tidy growth habit growing up to 3’ feet tall and wide.
The stems develop into dense clumps, usually up to 2′ – 3’ feet tall.
These stems produce bunches of leaves and flowers, forming into a large round plant.
The beautiful plant grows fresh leaves and flowers all spring and summer long.
Flowering and Fragrance
Bush morning glory produces trumpet-like white flowers, 3’ feet wide with a 4’ feet long throat.
These lovely flowers boast a purplish or pinkish-lavender flower color and bloom in the morning only.
They are utterly soft and delicate with deep yellow centers.
The nectars attract bees and hummingbirds to these showy wildflowers.
These mildly fragrant flowers bloom in full glory during spring and summer.
The better the growing conditions the longer the flowers will stick around.
Light and Temperature
- The woody perennial needs full sun or part shade to enjoy a healthy life in USDA Hardiness Zone 8 – 11.
- This encourages the growth of leaves and flowers in a great many numbers and ensures they stay abloom throughout their peak season.
- It is hardy to 10° to 15° degrees Fahrenheit (-12° to -9° C).
- Ideal sunlight is crucial for the development of the plant.
- Excessive or poor light settings may result in a droopy stature.
- During winters, protect the plant from frost.
- Bring it indoors when the temperature falls below 15° degrees Fahrenheit (-9° C).
Watering and Feeding
Ipomoea Ieptophylla prefers moderate amounts of water but are also drought tolerant.
Water the plant deeply but infrequently.
Ideally, the plant needs to be watered every two weeks in the summer season.
During the winter months, the water supply should be reduced to half.
The soil takes time to dry so make sure not to over-water it.
The evergreen shrub grows without fertilizer.
However, the plant more blooms when fertilized regularly during the growing season.
Avoid over-fertilizing or the stems will become droopy and damaged.
Apply an all-purpose fertilizer with a good amount of phosphorus, potassium, and nitrogen. Both dry and liquid fertilizers are appropriate to use.
Soil and Transplanting
- The small shrub thrives best in sandy or gravelly soils. It works best in well-draining soil.
- When transplanting, make sure not to disturb the roots of the hardy plant.
- This is because the root system is quite delicate and vulnerable.
- First, fill a flower pot with potting soil and dig a hole to place the morning glory.
- Place trellis in the center of the pot and then place the root ball gently in front of it.
- Neatly spread the soil around the stem.
- The soil should be packed tightly to prevent water from flowing through it.
- Dampen the soil, making sure water doesn’t seep out of the drainage hole.
Grooming and Maintenance
Ipomoea leptophylla are low-maintenance plants.
They require little to no pruning.
However, the heavily dense bush glories may need light shearing.
It is usually best to prune them in August when flowering is over.
Always plant the seeds in full sun and make sure to water the soil using drip irrigation or a soaker hose.
Never overwater or overfertilize the plant or else it may start to wilt.
In dry weather conditions, use a mulch to retain moisture.
In poor drainage areas, place the plant in a slightly raised spot.
During winters, protect the plant from frost by bringing it indoors.
How to Propagate Bush Morning Glory
Morning glory flowers are easy to propagate by seeds.
Soak the plant seeds in water for 24 hours before planting in light, fast-draining soil.
This allows the plant to shoot up roots faster.
In a large flowerpot, cover at least ¼” inch of soil.
Water the soiled area thoroughly.
Make sure to propagate in a sunny place, where the plant gets maximum sun.
Bush Morning Glory Pests and Diseases
Bush morning glories are susceptible to quite a few destructive pests including:
When exposed to these insects for a long time, the perennial plant may suffer from fungal leaf spots or fusarium wilt.
Deer is also a nuisance to beautiful morning glories.
Ipomoea Ieptophylla Uses
Bush morning glories help brighten up garden beds and borders with their beautiful colors.
Thus, they are a great way to enhance outdoor beauty as ground cover.
When kept indoors during winters, they help make the space greener and lovelier.
It is also the best source of nectar production for bees and hummingbirds.
The plant is related to the sweet potato and has an edible taproot some use for in their cooking.