Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Tall Morning Glory
Ipomoea purpurea 'Milky Way'

Family: Convolvulaceae (kon-volv-yoo-LAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ipomoea (ip-oh-MEE-a) (Info)
Species: purpurea (pur-PUR-ee-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Milky Way

Synonym:Convolvulus purpureus
Synonym:Ipomoea hirsutula
Synonym:Ipomoea purpurea var. diversifolia
Synonym:Pharbitis purpurea

One vendor has this plant for sale.

24 members have or want this plant for trade.

Vines and Climbers

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)
15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)
20-30 ft. (6-9 m)
30-40 ft. (9-12 m)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

Not Applicable

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade

Seed is poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall


Other details:
May be a noxious weed or invasive
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From seed; sow indoors before last frost
From seed; direct sow after last frost
From seed; germinate in a damp paper towel
Scarify seed before sowing

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

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5 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive pixie62560 On Oct 19, 2010, pixie62560 from South China, ME (Zone 5a) wrote:

I have to give it a positive as it self-seeds and comes back year after year even after some rough winters. I can see where it could be invasive in a warmer climate.

Positive DMgardener On Mar 9, 2009, DMgardener from (Daniel) Mount Orab, OH (Zone 6b) wrote:

This one starts flowering a bit later than other Ipomoeas. I have also noticed that the flecks on the flower can be of different color and combos. Has anybody else seen this?

Positive collincountytx On May 11, 2007, collincountytx from Dallas, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Looks great in front of a red, wood fence in my back yard. Heavily reseeding. Make sure your fence or arbor are strong. This beautiful, but vigorous vine has bent two thin metal arbors. I am now using a thick metal arbor which has supported the vine without problems.

Positive ipomoeadude On Aug 20, 2005, ipomoeadude from Accokeek, MD wrote:

Of all the morning glories I've grown, this was the most vigorous climber. The flowers are unremarkable, at least from a distance, but are attractive when viewed close up. Combine Milky Way with one of the dark varieties (Grandpa Ott's, Kniola's Black, etc.) and perhaps with Crimson Rambler for a terrific display of color and contrast. I did that one year and wound up with a couple of interesting sports, both of which returned the following year. Plant this where you won't mind seeing it year after year; like the other purpureas, it's almost impossible to eradicate.

Positive suncatcheracres On Nov 12, 2003, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:

Ipomoea purpurea, along with several other types of morning glories, are the first seeds I ever planted, with my mother's help in a sunny spot along a long, old wire fence in our backyard on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. I was eight years old, and these flowers inspired a life-long love of gardening.

The plants are evergreen in the Tropical South, but are used as a reseeding annual everywhere else. They grow rapidly, and the flowers can appear only a few weeks after the seed is sown, so they are a good candidate for children's gardens. The large, 5" flowers come in many lovely colors with white throats, and in this cultivar the white throat is obviously expanded to include the whole flower, with just small marks of color. Holding back on fertilizer and water will encourage flowering, and the plants reseed every year.

Watch out that the seedlings don't get away from you and eventually become a nusiance--but a lovely nusiance.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Carmichael, California
Elk Grove, California
Brooksville, Florida
Barbourville, Kentucky
Prospect, Kentucky
Zachary, Louisiana
South China, Maine
Battle Creek, Michigan
Blair, Nebraska
Lincoln, Nebraska
Morristown, New Jersey
Dundee, Ohio
Mount Orab, Ohio
Hulbert, Oklahoma
Bangor, Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Lafayette, Tennessee
Dallas, Texas
Freeport, Texas
Pipe Creek, Texas
Plano, Texas
Round Rock, Texas
Pearisburg, Virginia
Kalama, Washington

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