Tuesday, July 25, 2006

I'm being followed by a Moonflower, Moonflower....

This is going to be a late night, fly by post, so apologies in advance! (And super special apologies to Cat Stevens, aka, Yousef Islam.) Just a few shots of Datura meteloides, aka "Moonflower" or "Angel's Trumpet." One of the most tenacious annuals you might ever plant, with its spiny "thorn apple" seed pods which burst to disperse literally thousands of seeds in the fall ...so if you're not careful about snipping the pods before they ripen, you will never rid your garden of them... which, for most of us who like them, is not such a bad thing.

These plants have a bad rep. Also known as "Jimson Weed," "Stink weed" and "Loco Weed," Daturas are known for poisoning animals (and silly humans) who dare ingest any part of the plants. But, as an annual specimen, they are spectacular! Their flowers open at night, attracting sphinx moths and other night feeders and their fragrance is lovely .... despite their lowly "stinky foliage." Nonetheless, they are vigorous, fast growing plants that can reach heights of about 5-6 feet if in an ideal location, and they bloom constantly for months on end... as long as you can try to keep up with the seed pods! Lest I damn them too much with faint praise, just let me conclude by saying that there are few annuals easier than daturas to grow (well, maybe zinnias, but that's a toss up!) and they never cease to amaze passersby ... so as long as nobody gets any ideas about ingesting them, or if you have pets that might munch on plants, they are well worth planting a few in a sunny spot to make your moonlit evenings in the garden a bit more dramatic....



11 comments:

Family Man said...

Hi IVG.

You just taught me something else I didn't know. I had always heard of the loco weed, but had never seen it. The flower is beautiful.

Thanks.

olivia said...

Moonflowers are one of my very favourite flowers. They smell delicious, the look delicious. And they bring back wonderful memories of my Grandmother's garden. Thanks IVG. (Even though you did rat me out ... :P)

olivia said...

Oh ... and I am in no way saying that these are old lady flowers or that you would have old lady flowers in your garden ... lol. ;)

Family Man said...

Me thinks Olivia has gotten herself into some hot water.

Old lady flowers!

Of course you weren't saying that Olivia. :P & :~)

olivia said...

Ha! I'm getting back at him for ratting me out ... ;)

Family Man said...

As well you should have Olivia. Ratting you out like that, and IVG I wouldn't take that about the old lady flowers either. The nerve she has!

Now you both go to your corners and come out swinging when the bell sounds. Hah! :~)

supersoling said...

Hi IVG,
First time visitor :o)
This is the first time I've seen an Angel Trumpet. But I did hear of it years ago after one of my brothers (silly human is generous!) was released from an overnight stay in jail after, ahem, poisoining himself with a piece of one of these that a (never to be seen again) friend brought to his house and offered it up :o)

Thanks for clearing up some 25 year old questions for me (about the flower, not my brother)! LOL

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