[gardeners] moonflowers / Jimson Weed

flylo@txcyber.com (gardeners@globalgarden.com)
Mon, 1 Oct 2001 12:50:48 -0500

I have an awful weed (about a trillion zillion of them) growing in the 
goat lots, horse fields, etc. Anywhere you stir the soil these things 
pop up. I call them Jimson Weed's evil cousin. They're a form of 
datura but not the big angel trumpet flowers. They have little white 
quarter-sized flowers and the plant is covered in thorns, even the 
underside of the leaves have thorns. They're awful! Goats nor 
anything else will touch them, but the true angel's trumpet (Jimson 
Weed) the goats will devour. I can't tell if they get high from the 
experience,they're nutty goats after all.
Moonflowers: I grew these in Houston when I was a teenager and 
the seeds are almost bean or pea sized and black. You have to 
either abrade them or soak them before they sprout and one vine 
will cover a big porch. The leaves are huge and flowers are saucer 
sized but don't have the 'trumpet' stem portion like Jimson weed. 
The first hint of cold and they wilt away leaving a big ugly dead 
messy vine. Mine reseeded with a white seed and they were 
infertile so maybe the plant needs 2 to pollinate?
Morning glory has heart shaped leaves but it's a small leaf 
compared to moonflowers. Little known fact: Morning glory root is 
made into an essential oil called 'High John The Conqueror', and is 
a wonderfully floral scent. (I use it in a lot of my milk soaps.)
The stuff runs about $12 per 1/4 oz, I always feel so guilty when I 
pull the vines up! martha