Moonflower Vine Is the Fragrant, Night-Blooming Plant You Need in Your Garden

Move over, morning glory—there's a new plant in town.

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There’s one thing every horticulturist has in common—we’re always on the lookout for unusual plants! From a ‘Citrus Splash’ rose to the eye-catching corkscrew plant, there’s no shortage of beautiful things to add to our front yards. Now, there’s a new addition to the party—and this one’s going to keep your garden glowing all night long.

Meet the moonflower vine, a plant that looks as magical as it sounds.

What Is a Moonflower Vine?

This night-blooming flower has large, pure white blooms, heart-shaped leaves and a sweet, pleasant scent. While it definitely looks like a floating moon in full bloom, the plant actually takes its name from its tendency to open only at night, on cloudy days or in the shade. While you might not be able to enjoy them during the day, the pale, almost-glowing flowers are the perfect backdrop for summer nights spent on the patio or for an evening garden party.

How Can I Grow Moonflower Vine?

Luckily, if you’ve got the right location, moonflowers are super easy to grow. You’ll want to plant them in a spot where the vines can jump quickly into full sun once the seeds germinate. The warmth and light encourage the plant to produce thin green vines that wrap quickly around anything nearby and reach well over 15 feet, so make sure you set up a trellis or another support to let them climb.

You can also grow them in large pots, which reduces the thicket of leaves and vines and allows them to bloom earlier in the season. However, this may keep the plant from thriving as beautifully as it does in the ground—so choose wisely.

Wherever you choose to plant the vines, make sure the soil is kept moist, as the plants will wilt in direct sunlight otherwise. Luckily, they’re hardy, and will spring right back up if watered soon enough. For extra nutrients, feed plants with a regular dose of high phosphorus fertilizer, but avoid a high nitrogen one—that will give you lots of leaves, but few flowers.

What Else Do I Need To Know?

These plants are perennial in areas without deep freezes (zones 9-11) during the winter, but they’re usually treated like annuals and replanted every spring. If you live in a more tropical climate, they can grow year-round, but keep them trimmed for a tidy garden. If you’re wondering what zone you’re in, the USDA has a handy map.

Keep in mind that the seeds are toxic if swallowed, so keep your plant packets away from small children and pets, and trim flowers before seeds can form!

Where to Buy Moonflower Plants

The seeds for these beautiful blooms are available on Etsy for just $3, so we’re definitely going to snap up a packet!

If you’re looking for plants that are both pretty and great on the plate, check out our tips for growing a kitchen herb garden, or if you’re more of an indoors person, take a look at these gorgeous plants that will definitely brighten up your home office.

Amrita Thakkar
Amrita is a writer, poet and amateur photographer who often ends up applying these skills to her one great love: food. You can find her up at 3 a.m. writing, researching the perfect combo for her next grilled cheese or making a more eco-friendly grocery list.