How to Grow Vibrant Morning Glories Indoors from Seed

The heart-shaped leaves and trumpet-shaped flowers of the morning glory plant look very old-fashioned. They will take your garden back to a simpler time, when decorations were flowers that grew up trellises, arbors, and gazebos. When the sun warms them up in the morning, morning glory buds unwind and open up. This is how they got their name. The smell of pink, purple, scarlet, blue, magenta, white, solid, and striped flowers is shared with us and the pollinators they bring in. Morning glories can be prolific climbers, so plan out carefully where you plant this beauty!.

Morning glories are beloved old-fashioned vines that grace trellises, fences, and arbors with their cheerful, trumpet-shaped blooms. While these beauties are typically direct-sown outdoors after the last spring frost, you can also start morning glory seeds indoors. This gives you a head start on the season with robust young seedlings ready to transplant as soon as the weather warms up. Follow this simple guide to learn how to grow morning glories indoors from seed for stunning summertime flowers.

Getting Started

When to Plant

Morning glory seeds can be started indoors 4-6 weeks before the average last frost date in your area. This gives the seedlings enough time to develop strong root systems and leaves to support vigorous growth when transplanted outside.

Check your local frost date and count backwards 6 weeks to determine your ideal indoor planting timeframe. In most zones, this will be sometime in March or April.

Choosing Your Seeds

Morning glories come in a rainbow of colors like pink, purple, blue, white, red, and bi-colors. Popular varieties for growing indoors include:

  • Heavenly Blue – Vibrant blue blooms on 10-15′ vines
  • Scarlett O’Hara – Gorgeous red flowers on 8-10′ vines
  • Flying Saucers – Unique star-shaped white and blue blooms
  • Grandpa Otts – Deep purple flowers with red star centers
  • Peppermint Twist – White blooms with pink stripes

Buy fresh morning glory seeds from a reputable source each year for the best germination rates

Setup and Supplies

Here are some tips for an ideal indoor planting setup

  • Containers: Choose containers at least 3-4″ deep with drainage holes. Individual small plastic pots, cell packs, or peat pellets all work well.
  • Seed starting mix: Use a light, sterile soilless mix made for seeds. This prevents disease and provides good drainage.
  • Lighting: Morning glories need full sun. Provide 14-16 hours under grow lights or a bright, south-facing window.
  • Temperature: Optimal temps are 70-80°F. Consider investing in a seedling heat mat.
  • Humidity: Morning glories appreciate moderate humidity around 65%. Use a seedling dome or tray of water nearby.
  • Fertilizer: Avoid fertilizing seedlings until they are 2-4 weeks old. Then use a diluted liquid fertilizer once a week.

Planting Morning Glory Seeds

Follow these simple steps for planting morning glory seeds indoors:

  1. Moisten your seed starting mix and fill containers, gently firming. Leave about 1/2 inch from the rim.

  2. Sow seeds 1/2 inch deep in each container. Morning glories have a tough outer shell, so consider nicking or filing down the seed coat on one side to encourage germination.

  3. Water well from below to settle the soil after sowing. Then cover containers with plastic domes or wrap to retain moisture.

  4. Move containers to a warm location with sun exposure. Maintain temperatures around 70-80°F. The soil should stay evenly moist but not soaked.

  5. Morning glory seeds typically germinate in 5-14 days. Remove domes/wrap once sprouts emerge. Provide air circulation with a fan to prevent fungal diseases.

  6. Thin seedlings down to the one strongest plant per container once the first true leaves appear. Snip extra plants at soil level.

Caring for Young Morning Glory Seedlings

From germination until transplant time, morning glory seedlings need attentive care:

  • Light: Ensure 14-16 hours of direct sun or bright grow lights daily. Turn containers frequently for even growth.

  • Temperature: Maintain warm temperatures around 70-80°F. Move off heat mats after germination.

  • Air circulation: Run fans intermittently to strengthen stems and prevent fungal issues.

  • Water: Keep soil consistently moist but not saturated. Allow pots to partially dry out between waterings.

  • Nutrients: Begin fertilizing 2-4 weeks after germination with a diluted liquid fertilizer once a week.

  • Transplanting: Harden off seedlings for 7-10 days before transplanting outside in late spring after all danger of frost.

Tips for Robust Morning Glory Seedlings

Follow these tips for success growing sturdy, vigorous morning glory seedlings indoors:

  • Start more seeds than you need! Germination rates average 50-60%. Sow 2-3 seeds per pot and thin later.

  • Use bottom heat for warmth. Investing in a seedling heat mat helps provide consistent 70-80°F temps.

  • Maximize light exposure. Turn pots frequently so seedlings grow upright and sturdy, not leggy and lanky.

  • Allow the soil surface to partially dry out between waterings. Damping off disease thrives in saturated soil.

  • Harden off seedlings before transplanting by slowly exposing them to outdoor conditions over 7-10 days.

  • Pinch back tips once seedlings have 4-6 true leaves. This encourages bushy, compact growth.

  • Transplant on a calm, cloudy day into warm, fertile soil enriched with compost. Space 12-18 inches apart.

  • Provide trellises, fencing, or other vertical supports for vines to climb once planted outside.

Troubleshooting Common Problems

Here are some potential issues and fixes for unhealthy morning glory seedlings:

  • Leggy growth: Insufficient light, turn more frequently under lights.

  • Yellowing leaves: Low nitrogen, increase diluted fertilizer.

  • Leaf spots/wilting: Fungal disease, improve air circulation.

  • Failure to thrive: Inadequate warmth, provide bottom heat.

  • Damping off: Overwatering, allow more drying between waterings.

  • Poor germination: Old seed, nick seed coats and always use fresh seed.

Enjoy Your Homegrown Morning Glories!

One of the joys of gardening is watching a tiny seed you planted indoors grow into a thriving plant outside. Follow this complete guide to morning glory seed starting for success growing these cheerful, nostalgic vines from your own windowsill or grow lights. The brilliant flowers they produce after transplanting will be an extra-special reward.

When to Plant Morning Glory Seeds

Once the soil is at least 65°F, you can plant seeds directly, or you can start them indoors four to six weeks before the last frost date in your area.

Where to Plant Morning Glory Seeds

If you want to grow morning glory plants, make sure they get six to eight hours of direct sunlight each day.

Easiest Way to Grow Seeds | How to Germinate Morning Glory Seeds | How to Grow Seeds


What month do you plant morning glory seeds?

Growing morning glory from seeds is simple. The y require a long growing season, so sow seed in early to mid-spring.

Do morning glory seeds need to be soaked?

This is a simple process that involves nicking the seeds with a knife or rubbing them with sandpaper or a file. Learn more about the benefits of scarification here. In addition, we recommend soaking morning glory seeds for 24 hours to encourage germination.

When should I plant morning glory seeds?

The best time to plant morning glory seeds is in early spring after the last expected frost. You can plant them directly into the ground or start them indoors 4-6 weeks before the last expected frost date for your area. Morning glories need warm soil to germinate. How far apart should I space morning glory seeds?

How do you plant morning glories?

For an early summer display, start seeds indoors 6-8 weeks before your last spring frost date. Morning glories germinate best in warm soil temperatures between 70-80°F. Fill seed starting trays or pots with a loose, well-draining seed starting mix. Plant seeds 1/4 inch deep and space them 1-2 inches apart.

How long does morning glory take to germinate?

Germination time for morning glories averages four to seven days at a temperature of 65 to 85 degrees F. (18-29 C.). Keep the soil moist, but not soggy while germinating. Seeds of morning glory are toxic. Be sure to keep seed packets, seeds that are soaking, and those planted in trays away from children and pets.

Do morning glories grow in pods?

The seeds form in pods and can be collected and saved. Instead of planting morning glory seeds each year, gardeners can let the seeds drop for self-seeding. However, flowering may be later in the season and the seeds can spread morning glories to other areas of the garden.

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