I’m being followed by a *moonflower …

October 14, 2009 § 13 Comments


It was like buying magic beans.
HM found the moonflower seeds in a shop and struck by the name and the hope they would really bloom at night, he bought them.
He planted them in a huge pot in the front of the house. 
The vines began, huge green leaves.
And then the deer discovered them.
HM  put some ratty old wire mesh around them as protection.
I waited for a note in our mailbox from the neighbors. (None came.)
The spindly vine continued but the leaves looked to be fainting in the summer sun and so we moved the pot near a tree by the pool.

Suddenly they thrived. I shouldn’t say “they.”

There was no “they” yet.
There was only more and more huge broad green leaves, very nice, very ordinary.
About three weeks ago, as I stood on the patio just after dark, wondering whether to stay in the balm or go inside and “do” something, I caught sight of something white and shining.
I would say that it called my name, but it didn’t quite.
But it said something, because I turned suddenly to see it.
It was the first moonflower.
We had heard that people have moonflower parties, set up their chairs and wait and watch for the bloom to open. It happens in a minute.

I ran indoors to get HM and dragged him outdoors.
Flower drama.
Yes, the moonflower blooms late afternoon, early evening and all night long.
It’s over and done by daylight the next day.
It is said to be fragrant although we didn’t notice that particularly.
It is huge, the size of a small plate.
It is silken and can barely hold it’s own, nearly draping over itself.
If I wrote a children’s story, it would be in it.

I examined the vine the next day to see how many more blooms might happen.
There were about eight “buds.”
The weather has cooled considerably.
The plant has slowed down, though there are about 12 possible blooms to go.
However, the frost threatens and the moonflower, like other flora, does not like frost. 

Next year, I”m plunking my chair next to the vine and watching.
It is a magical thing to have a night-blooming flower.


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§ 13 Responses to I’m being followed by a *moonflower …

  • ds says:

    It is, indeed, a magical thing. As a kid, I read a book called The Moonflower Vine (not a children’s story, so your idea is safe) that I loved.Have wanted to see that flower ever since. Now I have, in a perfect photograph with perfect words beneath it. Thank you

  • shoreacres says:

    Lucky you! Moonflowers of every sort are magical beyond belief. Next year can you plant a little earlier so you can enjoy them all summer?

    In Liberia, I had a stand of what we called Moonlilies. They were peppermint striped, and huge – the blossoms could be 12″ long and luncheon plate sized when they opened.

    We did have parties. Each blossom opened only once, beginning well after dark and lasting only a couple of hours. They opened so quickly it might have been time-lapse photography. Their scent was strong and pure – you could smell them from across the road if the wind was right.

    Once, we saw huge moths coming to them. Whether they were part of nature’s plan or just enjoyed a good party, I don’t know. But it was a splendid evening!

  • Arti says:

    They’re indeed magical, aren’t they? I love your title as well, imaginative. I’ve discovered a video clip, in real time, showing the blooming of a moonflower. Just in case you miss yours. (Just hope this won’t be sent to your spams)


  • typehype says:

    This post was enchanting. I’d never heard of Moonflowers, until now. How special to have caught a glimpse of its short little life.

  • jeanie says:

    How beautiful! Yes, I would watch, too. And I loved the name of this post!

  • Bellezza says:

    I loved the title of this post, followed by the picture, followed by the image of a night-blooming flower. As a night-blooming woman, I can totally relate to it.

  • oh how wonderful…..

    I’ve not forgotten the Honest Scrap by the way, I should get it done soon,,….thanks again for thinking of me…

  • Joanne says:

    Oooooh, I want one of those! I don’t know if we can get them in this country. And perfect for a children’s story. I’d be dragging my hubby outside too… night-blooming…

  • litlove says:

    This is just delightful! I love the way you wrote this – very magical in itself.

  • Jeannine says:

    You made me dig out my old Cat cd – sure did have some good tunes back in his day! Great pic.

    • oh says:

      Jeannine, Lucky you kept your “Cat” – I had several of his albums which are…wherever albums go over the course of 3 decades and a dozen moves. But, on CD? hmmmm….I might just go have a look at Amazon and see if he’s there. Have a grand weekend!

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