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Publication #FPS-285

Ipomoea stolonifera Fiddle-Leaf Morning Glory1

Edward F. Gilman2


The fiddle-leaf morning glory is an herbaceous vine that is native to the southeastern United States (Fig. 1). This plant, unlike the beach morning glory, can be grown throughout Florida and along the coast. It attains a height of 4 to 6 inches but can spread along the ground to a distance of 75 feet. The small, thick, glossy green leaves are ovate-cordate in shape and densely cover the stems. Most leaves are divided into 5 lobes in a more or less star shape. This plant roots and branches at the nodes and spreads very rapidly. The white, funnel-shaped flowers of the fiddle-leaf morning glory are generally 2 ½ to 3 inches wide. They open in the early morning and close before noon each day during the blooming season; the flowers are borne in the summer and fall. Small, round seedpods that contain four velvety, dark brown seeds appear on this plant after flowering.

Figure 1. 

Fiddle-leaf morning glory

[Click thumbnail to enlarge.]

General Information

Scientific name: Ipomoea stolonifera
Pronunciation: ipp-oh-MEE-uh stoe-law-NIFF-fur-uh
Common name(s): fiddle-leaf morning glory
Family: Convolvulaceae
Plant type: ground cover
USDA hardiness zones: 8 through 11 (Fig. 2)
Planting month for zone 8: year round
Planting month for zone 9: year round
Planting month for zone 10 and 11: year round
Origin: native to Florida
Uses: ground cover

Figure 2. 

Shaded area represents potential planting range.

[Click thumbnail to enlarge.]


Height: depends upon supporting structure
Spread: depends upon supporting structure
Plant habit: spreading; prostrate (flat)
Plant density: moderate
Growth rate: fast
Texture: coarse


Leaf arrangement: alternate
Leaf type: simple
Leaf margin: lobed
Leaf shape: elliptic (oval)
Leaf venation: pinnate
Leaf type and persistence: evergreen
Leaf blade length: 2 to 4 inches
Leaf color: green
Fall color: no fall color change
Fall characteristic: not showy


Flower color: white
Flower characteristic: summer flowering; fall flowering


Fruit shape: round
Fruit length: less than .5 inch
Fruit cover: dry or hard
Fruit color: unknown
Fruit characteristic: inconspicuous and not showy

Trunk and Branches

Trunk/bark/branches: not applicable
Current year stem/twig color: green
Current year stem/twig thickness: thick


Light requirement: plant grows in full sun
Soil tolerances: acidic; alkaline; sand; loam;
Drought tolerance: high
Soil salt tolerances: good
Plant spacing: 24 to 36 inches


Roots: not applicable
Winter interest: plant has winter interest due to unusual form, nice persistent fruits, showy winter trunk, or winter flowers
Outstanding plant: not particularly outstanding
Invasive potential: aggressive, spreading plant
Pest resistance: no serious pests are normally seen on the plant

Use and Management

Ipomoea stolonifera is well adapted to beaches and coastal dunes. It is most useful as a sand binder in coastal landscapes. This vine is an excellent coastal ground cover and will also provide a screen or shelter if it is given a support, such as a trellis, to climb upon. Plant on 3-foot centers to quickly form a ground cover. It may not be well suited for home landscapes because it grows too quickly and has a very open growth habit.
This plant will flourish in full sun on well-drained, sandy soils. It is very tolerant of drought and salt air. The fiddle-leaf morning glory is a rapidly growing plant and requires frequent pruning.

Pests and Diseases

No pests or diseases are of major concern.



This document is FPS-285, one of a series of the Environmental Horticulture Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date October 1999. Reviewed February 2014. Visit the EDIS website at


Edward F. Gilman, professor, Environmental Horticulture Department, UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.

The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations. For more information on obtaining other UF/IFAS Extension publications, contact your county's UF/IFAS Extension office.

U.S. Department of Agriculture, UF/IFAS Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A & M University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Nick T. Place, dean for UF/IFAS Extension.