Can I Cut Back a Morning Glory Plant?

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(Image: morning glory-blue image by Susan Bradley from Fotolia.com)

Morning glory is an annual or perennial fast-growing vine that blooms through the summer in little space and with minimal care. The flowers are sky blue in color with white centers. The flowers open in the morning and last for only a day. You can cut back the perennial species of morning glory to the ground before the start of the new season. If you have the annual species of morning glory then it needs no pruning.

Cutting and Pruning

Morning glory is referred to as a twiner since it twines around wires and posts as it makes it way upward. If you really do need to bring the plant in shape to improve its general appearance, prune only lightly in the growing season. Prune the morning glory severely only when it is in its dormant season. The general rule is that pruning in later winter or early spring helps to encourage more growth compared to fall or summer pruning. The less care given to the plant the better it blooms. Though an abundance of water and fertilizer will increase the foliage, it will have no effect on the flowers.

Propagation and Care

You can propagate morning glory with seeds indoors about six weeks before the last frost in spring. The seeds of the morning glory are hard coated. Soak them for 24 hours in warm water prior to planting. The seeds germinate in a warm, moist 70 to 85 degree temperature within a week.

Plant them in a well-drained soil in full sun and about 6 inches apart. You need to provide the young plants with support but they don’t need so much help once they start to grow. The best place to plant them is in an area where you can see them during early day since the flowers will close in the low afternoon light and even on cloudy days. It is a good idea to grow them on small trellises in large pots. They mix and match very well with all other plants.

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References

  • “Minnesota Gardener’s Guide;” Melinda Myers; 2005
  • “The Pruning Book;” Lee Reich; 1999
  • “Pruning Made Easy;” Lewis Hill; 1997
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