'Grandpa Ott's'

Ipomoea purpurea

Family: Convolvulaceae (kon-volv-yoo-LAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ipomoea (ip-oh-MEE-a) (Info)
Species: purpurea (pur-PUR-ee-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Grandpa Ott's
View this plant in a garden



Vines and Climbers

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


15-18 in. (38-45 cm)


Not Applicable

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Seed is poisonous if ingested

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:



Medium Purple

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

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

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:


Gaylesville, Alabama

Mobile, Alabama

Phoenix, Arizona

Scottsdale, Arizona

Tolleson, Arizona

Gravette, Arkansas

Keremeos, British Columbia

Anderson, California

Carmichael, California

Delano, California

Elk Grove, California

Hesperia, California

JACUMBA, California

Menifee, California

Merced, California

Perris, California

Denver, Colorado

New Haven, Connecticut

Smyrna, Delaware

Hollywood, Florida

Jacksonville, Florida(2 reports)

Lake Worth, Florida

Palm Coast, Florida

Pensacola, Florida

Ruskin, Florida

Saint Cloud, Florida

Trenton, Florida

Vernon, Florida

Braselton, Georgia

Waycross, Georgia

Athens, Illinois

Itasca, Illinois

Demotte, Indiana

Evansville, Indiana

Greenville, Indiana

Portage, Indiana

Inwood, Iowa

Shawnee Mission, Kansas

Bethelridge, Kentucky

Calvert City, Kentucky

Prospect, Kentucky

Lake Charles, Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana

Falmouth, Maine

Skowhegan, Maine

Ellicott City, Maryland

Ann Arbor, Michigan

Bay City, Michigan

Morrice, Michigan

Saint Paul, Minnesota

Madison, Mississippi

Mathiston, Mississippi

Lincoln, Nebraska

Manchester, New Hampshire

Roswell, New Mexico

New Rochelle, New York

Concord, North Carolina

Bucyrus, Ohio

Cincinnati, Ohio

Dundee, Ohio

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Norristown, Pennsylvania

Roaring Branch, Pennsylvania

Fort Mill, South Carolina

Mount Pleasant, South Carolina

North Augusta, South Carolina

Clarksville, Tennessee

Lafayette, Tennessee

Westmoreland, Tennessee

Austin, Texas

Brazoria, Texas

Fort Worth, Texas

Georgetown, Texas

Houston, Texas(2 reports)

Liberty Hill, Texas

Nevada, Texas

Plano, Texas

Princeton, Texas

Round Rock, Texas

Layton, Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah

Chester, Vermont

South Burlington, Vermont

Stafford, Virginia

Bonney Lake, Washington

Kalama, Washington

Prairie Ridge, Washington

Neshkoro, Wisconsin

Racine, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Dec 12, 2012, ViningVirgo from Jacksonville, FL wrote:

When you take pictures of the Grandpa Ott bloom, as well as the Star of Yelta, you will need to adjust the hue to be more red because it always comes out more blue. It's an odd issue that I personally have never seen with any other flower yet. And that's not saying much lol.


On Apr 3, 2012, synsfun from Lake Charles, LA (Zone 9a) wrote:

This is the first year I tried Grandpa Otts Morning Glorys. I started 10 of these from seeds and was amazed how fast they are growing. Soon, I'll need to transplant to my garden and get them trained to climb where I want them to go. The only problem I have is catepillars. Anyone know how to eradicate this problem?


On Sep 6, 2010, themikeman from Concord, NC (Zone 7a) wrote:

Very Beautiful, but this vine is a very invasive pest to get rid of, especiallly if you put it in a garden of perennials and eventually don't want it their any longer. You will end up doing alot of weeding for the next few years, inorder to get rid of this crafty vine lol. Still no other purpley blue with lighter center morning glory like it. Just beautiful on a garden trellis or arbor. peace. mike


On Apr 22, 2008, nolabug from New Orleans, LA (Zone 9b) wrote:

I love these vines and their almost psychedelic blooms. I have heard of them as invasive, as a weed, but in my slim 2 years growing experience have never experienced them as anything but a delight. They bloom early and often, vine fairly quickly. I do find they are a favorite treat of caterpillars here in Louisiana, but if you leave anywhere that isn't so intensely bug infested, that shouldn't be a problem.


On Nov 19, 2007, CBernard from Perris, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

This is the first year that we have planted this morning glory. The flowers are so beautiful. They are also attractive to hummingbirds. We kept it trimmed back so it didn't go into the neighbor's backyard. It seemed like every seed that fell from the plant has already sprouted but there are still many on the plant that we are saving for next year if the current year's seeds don't automatically reseed next Spring.


On Oct 21, 2007, travist1975 from Vernon, FL wrote:

I have a rather large stand of Grandpa Ott's growing on my chain link fence. The vines have been there for at least 10 years(that's when I bought the house), but have never produced any seedpods. Has anyone else ever experienced this? Is the vine too old to produce seeds?I live in the panhandle of Florida and some winters the thing never dies back.


On Jun 8, 2007, alddesigns from Saint Cloud, FL wrote:

Beautiful blooms of electric violet purple! I love that this vine seems to climb EXACTLY where I want it to go! I think this is easily the best MG I've ever grown. I've grown Heavenly Blue, and Scarlett O'Hara, but this one has the nicest vines and the most amazing flowers.


On Mar 8, 2007, scfundogs from Mount Pleasant, SC wrote:

I grew Heavenly Blue MGs from seed and planted on two 8' sections of my privacy fence. I purchased 3 potted Grandpa Ott's from a nursery, placing each on another 8' section of fence adjacent to the HBs. The Ott's took off in a lush wall of very large, dark green, foliage spanning from ground to the top of the fence. The HBs, by contrast, grew straight to the top of the fence and pooled there with light green, smaller, leaves and stringy runners. I plan to purchase Grandpa Ott's for every 8' section of privacy fence I have this year. They are gorgeous, provide privacy, and draw so many compliments! Hopefully some of them will come back on their own, if not they're definitely worth the money to buy.


On Mar 5, 2007, berrygirl from Braselton, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

Love this one! One of the original Bavarian varieties that started SSE. Given to Kent and Diane (Ott) Whealy in 1972 by her grandfather, Baptist John Ott. He lived on a 40-acre farm near St. Lucas Iowa. Beautiful deep-purple flower with a red star in its throat. Reliably self-seeds each year. Plants will climb 15' or more, if given support. Self-seeding hardy annual at Heritage Farm.


On Oct 22, 2006, milkbonehappy from Chester, VT (Zone 5a) wrote:

I planted Grampa Ott morning glories around an ugly old post in my yard 4 years ago - to my delight, they self-seeded and have come back strong every year since. The foliage is a beautiful rich green, and dense, completely enveloping the post. The flowers are deep purple with magenta centers. It flowers for more than a month in late summer. The seeds are very easy to collect - after the foliage dies out, you will see a spherical seed pod where each flower had been. Once dry, each pod releases approximately 5 black seeds, a little smaller than a peppercorn. After the vines die, I pull them off the pole that they were growing on and give them a good shake over a piece of newspaper, and quickly collect dozens of seeds. Or, you can pick the individual pods. There are always many seeds th... read more


On Oct 6, 2006, gardenbugde from Smyrna, DE (Zone 7a) wrote:

I've grown morning glories for several years now and although I love my Heavenly Blues and the mixes that have graced my porch railing, I have to say that Grandpa Ott's is my new favorite! The color is just gorgeous- a dark, rich purple! Easy to grow, prolific bloomer. I kept them away from other mg's this year to ensure that there wasn't any cross pollination. I will continue to grow these for sure!


On Aug 22, 2006, Sherry1961 from Skowhegan, ME (Zone 5b) wrote:

I live in central maine and this is my first year with morning glory's. Mine have finally bloomed, late July to mid August. Had a problem with Japenese beetles, but is under control and am getting beautiful blooms. ~ Sherry


On Sep 3, 2005, flowercrazy39 from Manchester, NH wrote:

Very pretty on railings and grown with black eyed susan vine!


On Jul 4, 2005, possumtrot from Calvert City, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

This is the first year I have grown these. I did learn many important lessons! Plant few seeds, Stay on top of the growing vines, water regular,they do better in ground than in pots, dont go on vacation with out a plant sitter! I have trained mine to encompas the porch, and WOW! soo beautiful. I have the most fun training them. Will choke anything else out. Attracts birds & bee's and those pesky Jap. beatles. I will be keeping them for years if I can figure out where the seedheads are.


On Apr 25, 2005, GreenLife from (Zone 10b) wrote:

Because they self sow, I have morning glories growing in every nook and cranny of my backyard. They add great color and whimsy, grow throughout the entire year, and attract hummingbirds. The negatives are that they wrap around everything and leave behind a tangled mess when they die. Otherwise, their low maintenance gives them added attraction.


On Mar 2, 2005, tweezle from State College, PA (Zone 5b) wrote:

An absolutely beautiful flower that self sows every year. It stays contained in the bed it was planted in, and grows beautifully up the side of our house - getting many compliments! Seeds are easy to gather.


On Jul 11, 2004, randiliana from McCord,
Canada wrote:

I have had morning glories in the front raised bed of my house for over 20 years. The bed is south facing and fairly dry and they seem to have no trouble at all. Other than to clean the bedd out in the fall/spring, they are very little work. They do not have anyting to climb, but they interwine with each other and provide themselves with support. They self seed freely, but I rarely have seedling outside the bed. Even when I do, they are easily uprooted. These were seeded over 20 years ago, and have never been added to since. They are a very tough plant.


On Jun 21, 2004, broozersnooze from Jacksonville, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

There is a purple one growing just on the edge of some wetlands on my street. It's beauty graces the road side for my morning walk & I have longed for some seeds. Being unfamiliar with this plant, have not figured out what the seeds look like so I can collect them. From reading the specifics about this plant I assume it should be fine for xeriscaping. I would gladly trade the invasion of Morning Glory for that dreaded air potato vine I've been battling for 30 years.


On Aug 12, 2002, rdlayman wrote:

I have had Morning Glories gracing the short fence area on left side of the house for 4 years now they have stayed in the same area covering that portion of fence only (about 12 feet of fencing)and not spreed out. I provided a 1 foot deep potting mixture and native clay in an 8 ft long 1 1/2 feet wide brick lined edging and they tend to stay within that bed and on that fence. In 4 years they have not encroched on any other portion of fence or yard. I don't train them i just let them do their own thing and it seems to know what i will accept. I do let it grow onto the gate, when first opened it breaks off some vines but not a problem. I like the look as 3 different colors grow in same area. I have tried growing other flowers in that bed, but the morning glory vines do want to smother them t... read more


On Aug 12, 2002, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

The flowers are seductively beautiful, but self-sown seedlings are a real hazard; many are set, and seemingly every one germinates.