The so-called morning glory, also known by its scientific name Mirabilis jalapa or by one of its many nicknames, such as plant of Don Pedro, pedritos, marvel, gallant at night or plant parakeets, belongs to a genus of plants with about 60 species. They are plants from America, specifically from tropical areas, and the most used are the Mirabilis jalapa and the Mirabilis longiflora. The don Diego de noche or morning glory at night reaches heights of up to 1 meter when it develops properly and, although its leaves are very pretty, the most striking thing is the night morning glory flowerof bright solid and mixed colors and that only opens at sunset, to close again when the sun rises.
If you want to learn more about this plant, stay in this interesting EcologíaVerde article and discover everything about the caring for the morning glory or gallant at night.
Location and weather for the morning glory
What tropical plant that is, this species does not tolerate very low or excessively high temperatures, nor does it tolerate drought well. The morning glory needs a place protected from the cold, where the temperature does not drop never below 10 ºC. Due to this, in non-tropical countries, the most common thing is to have the morning glory in a pot, so that we can control the environmental conditions more easily when changing the pot. If you plant it outdoors and you see that it weakens with the arrival of the cold, you will have to transplant the morning glory plant at night to a more protected area as soon as possible.
As far as its light needs are concerned, it’s best to expose it to full sun, unless you live in an extraordinarily hot area or with an exceptionally intense sun, in which case it will be better to opt for semi-shade, protected from the worst hours of midday and afternoon. This plant, in addition, supports the saline air of the coast without problems.
Watering the morning glory at night
The morning glory needs abundant and frequent irrigations, as it is a species typical of naturally humid climates. This need for moisture is accentuated if we grow it in a pot, as is usually the case, since its roots have a much more limited growth.
In the warmer months, it will be necessary to maintain a certain level of moisture in the substrate, although always without flooding it. In the cold months it is necessary to space out the watering more, since the plant absorbs much less water.
We recommend you read this other post about When to water plants to learn more.
Substrate and fertilizer for morning glory
It is not a particularly demanding plant in terms of substrate, but since we are going to have to water it often in summer, it is important that it offers a drainage as best as possible. To achieve this effect, it is a good idea to add a third part of sand or river gravel to the mix or other materials, such as coconut fiber, that make the substrate lighter, aerated and drained.
Regarding fertilizer, your flowers will appreciate a good contribution of organic matter, being the earthworm humus an optimal option as almost always. If the plant is planted in the ground, a good annual contribution will suffice, while in a pot this should be done every two weeks.
Pruning the morning glory
The morning glory has no need of pruning beyond the maintenance pruning basic. For this reason, it will be enough to regularly check the condition of the plant and remove the leaves and branches in poor condition.
Remember that when remove the leaves or branches in poor conditionIf you use pruning shears or other tools, you will have to disinfect them before and after use to avoid spreading diseases and pests, such as fungi, through the plant or to other plants.
Reproduction of the morning glory
Regarding the multiplication or reproduction of the morning glory, this is done very simply by seeds. It is possible to make morning glory cuttingsbut given that their seeds have a great growth capacity, it is usually more convenient to resort to them, since they do not involve long waiting periods.
doWhen to plant the morning glory? The ideal is to do it during the spring months, although if the weather is good it can be done practically all year round. The night morning glory seeds They should be planted in seedbeds or small containers in an area with warm temperatures and without great variations. Then they will have to be transplanted to their final location once the seedlings reach about 25 cm in height.
When does the morning glory bloom?
The Mirabilis jalapa produces flowers continuously during practically all summer and fallreaching the same plant to be able to present flowers of different colorseven mixed in the same flower, among which are different shades of white, yellow, pink and red.
However, its greatest peculiarity is the one that we already mentioned at the beginning: its flowers only open in the hours of absence of sun or when it is low. Thus, it is common to use this plant to add its pleasant fragrance to gardens and spaces in the afternoon and at night, giving them a very unique touch.
Pests of the morning glory
This plant is not particularly susceptible to any particular pest, being in fact quite resistant to the most common ones. You have to be very careful with the aphidwhich is often accompanied by ants and of the characteristic black mushrooms.
If an aphid is detected on morning glory leaves, it is recommended to treat it immediately with some ecological pesticide such as potassium soap, garlic solution, or neem oil. Here you can see more Home remedies for aphids on plants.
We also recommend you read these other articles on How to get rid of ants on plants and Why black spots appear on plants.
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