The Meaning of Morning Glories A Full Guide

The Meaning of Morning Glories: A Full Guide

Nothing is quite like the morning glory flower. Its iconic flower rolls open for a few hours during the day and closes at nightfall.

If you’re interested in more facts about this fascinating flower, this guide is what you’re looking for.

We will discuss the morning glory’s meaning and symbolism, including its Victorian and spiritual connotations, traditional uses, and more!

What is the morning glory flower’s meaning?

Morning glories signify unrequited love, life, and death, as they swirl open during the day and fade and close at night. Hardy and adaptive, they also symbolize strength and endurance.

Dual-Aspect Symbols

The flower meanings of the morning glory come in contrasting pairs. For example, since this flower unfurls in the morning and closes by the evening, it symbolizes sunset and sunrise, wake and sleep, reality and dreams, youth and age, and life and death.

Unrequited Love

One can interpret the life cycle of this gorgeous flower as unrequited love. The flower’s short blooming time can be compared to love that isn’t meant to last because it isn’t returned.

Strength and Resilience

The morning glory signifies a person’s strength, resilience, and tenacity to overcome the problems or obstacles they’re facing. This is because the plant can endure intense heat and cold throughout its growing period.

More than that, it goes on to develop breathtaking and colorful flowers and green lush vines. 

Morning glories can remind us to stay tough and calm no matter how difficult life seems to be at the moment.

Basic Information about the Morning Glory

Basic Information about the Morning Glory

Genus: Ipomoea

Family: Convolvulaceae

Plant type: Vining herb or shrub

Grown as: Decorative, medicinal, and sacred plant

Native habitat: Central America and Mexico

Blooming period: Early summer to mid-fall

Care needs: A lot of sunlight and ample space

The morning glory is a tender vining herb or shrub belonging to the genus Ipomoea. Along with several other like species, these flowers make up the Convolvulaceae family.

They’re native to Central America and Mexico where they have been used as an ornamental, medicinal, and sacred plant.

On the subject of their care, young morning glories need to be protected, as they’re sensitive to cold and frosty conditions.

Once they’ve matured, they can amazingly bear cold up to a certain degree during their growing season from early summer to mid-fall.

Plus, their growing requirements are simple. For these flowers to remain stunning, they need plenty of sunshine and space.

What is the morning glory flower like?

What is the morning glory flower like

This flower features umbrella-shaped flowers with a bright-colored center. Its romantic twining stems are hairy and narrow and extend on the ground as it grows.

The flower comes in a great assortment of colors, including purple-blue, magenta, pink, and white. It also emits a fragrant scent that attracts hummingbirds and butterflies.

In a single season, this charming flower can grow rapidly up to 10 feet long. Also, since it self-seeds a lot, it can spread easily and wildly in the garden or greenhouse if not controlled.

They’re well-suited to be grown in potted vessels and in low ground as well as over pergolas and arbors for support and a dramatic and eye-catching effect.

How did the morning glory flower get its name?

How did the morning glory flower get its name

The beautiful flower is called morning glory because its flowers gently open during the day.  The name was coined in the early 19th century when it was first cultivated in Mexico and Central America.

How did the morning glory flower come to be associated with morning?

The aptly named morning glory flower only unveils its fantastic, unique, and trumpet-shaped flowers in the morning when it gets the first rays of the sun.

This flower does not ever bloom in afternoons and nights, contrary to other plants.

What is the morning glory flower meaning in different cultures?

The morning glory has special meanings in English, Native American, Chinese, and Japanese cultures. It can mean life and death, rebirth, young love, and more.

What is the morning glory flower meaning in the Victorian language of flowers? 

In floriography or the Victorian language of flowers, the morning glory represents life and death. That’s because families and friends often bring these flowers to a loved one’s resting place in cemeteries or gravesites on All Saint’s Day or when they come to visit.

The morning glory is usually placed on top of the tombstone, which associates it with death, accidents, and short life.

However, some also view the morning glory as a sign of rebirth or freedom. With the body gone, the spirit heads on to the afterlife without illness or the problems they had had in this world.

What is the morning glory flower meaning in England today?

In England today, the morning glory flower conveys love and dedication. It says to the receiver, “I truly love you” and “You’re my only one.”

Be careful, though, as some can think of this flower as a symbol of unreturned love like that of Sir Lancelot and Lady Elaine of Astolat in the classic medieval tale. 

Lady Elaine loved Lancelot with all her heart, but his heart only belonged to Queen Guinevere, who was King Arthur’s wife.

What is the morning glory flower meaning in Native American cultures? 

What is the morning glory flower meaning in Native American cultures

To the Native Americans living in Mexico, where the morning glory was prevalent, the flower was associated with life and renewal.

They considered this a sacred flower because they believed it connected them to the spiritual world. 

In fact, they used its seeds during vision quests to communicate with the Great Spirit. The sun, which brings morning, is one of the deity’s manifestations, by the way.

From a scientific point of view, the explanation is that this flower and its seeds have powerful psychedelic properties that altered the user’s brain and moods or caused hallucinations if ingested, according to this article.

What is the morning glory flower meaning in China?

In China, the morning glory is a reminder of two young lovers separated by the gods and only allowed to meet once a year. This comes from a traditional Chinese story about two stars who fell in love. 

One was the boy-star Chien Niu, who was tasked to take care of the water buffalos in the heavenly kingdom. The other half was Chih Neu, who was assigned seamstress work.

Their love grew stronger to the extent that they completely forgot about their celestial duties. The gods were then angered, and as a consequence, they separated them on opposite sides of the Silver River. 

But upon seeing that the two were hurting, the gods showed mercy and decided to let the lovers meet once a year. The morning glory is a perfect symbol of the couple’s love because it only blooms for one day.

What is the morning glory flower meaning in Japan?

Similar to Chinese culture, the morning glory represents young love and innocence in Japan. This flower is usually gifted to a crush or a first love.

What is the morning glory flower’s spiritual meaning?

What is the morning glory flower’s spiritual meaning

The morning glory flower carries various spiritual meanings across various religious beliefs:

  • In Buddhism, it stands for the path to enlightenment.
  • In Christianity, it suggests hope and forgiveness.
  • In Islam, it communicates faith, purity, and innocence.

Morning Glory in Buddhism

Within the Buddhist doctrine, the morning glory flower is important, as it stands for one of the five stages of enlightenment.

The stems and leaves of the morning glory denote wisdom in this religion. The entire plant also helps to bring an individual peace and happiness.

Morning Glory in Christianity

The morning glory is one of the few flowers (the other being the lily and rose) that is symbolic of the Virgin Mary’s qualities. 

In particular, morning glories reflect her simplicity, modesty, and purity. Aside from that, they suggest forgiveness and hope because they can continue to grow amid a challenging environment.

Morning Glory in Hinduism

Hindu followers view the blue morning glory as a symbol of safety, protection, and prosperity.

It’s associated with the Hindu god of protection, Vishnu, who is said to have been reincarnated nine times to restore the earth to peace, bliss, and freedom.

Morning Glory in Islam

Blue morning glories are a flower of great spiritual relevance in Islam. It represents the Prophet Muhammad and symbolizes faith, purity, and innocence.

Morning Glory in Judaism

The morning glory isn’t a prominent symbol in Judaism, but it represented the prophet Elijah who lived in the northern kingdom of Israel.

How to Care for the Morning Glory Flower

How to Care for the Morning Glory Flower

To correctly care for the morning glory, give it full direct sun for six to eight hours daily, place it in well-draining soil, and water it once every week.


The morning glory flower needs full direct sun exposure from six to eight hours every day. 

You can place it outdoors on the porch or in the garden. Indoors, place it in a sheltered site or conservatory that gets plenty of light.


Morning glories aren’t that picky about their soil. But for best results, the soil has to be organic, moist, and well-draining.

In addition, keep the potting medium very slightly acidic within 6 to 6.8 of the pH range.


Once a week, water the morning glory until the top inch of its soil is moist. It’s naturally drought-tolerant once established.

To enhance its moisture retentiveness, you can spread mulch around the top layer of the soil.


The morning glory’s preferred surrounding temperature is between 68℉ and 95℉. They’re better off left in a hot rather than a cold place.

Don’t put them in a place below 50℉, or the morning glory will get damaged by frost, stop growing, or die.


While the morning glory will continue to grow without you feeding it with plant food, it won’t produce the largest and best flowers. You can give it an all-purpose balanced fertilizer with an equal NPK ratio to ensure it grows fast and healthy.

What are the morning glory flower’s uses?

What are the morning glory flower's uses

Morning glories can be used in the kitchen. Its stems and roots can be added to stir-fried meals, healthy salads, and soups. 

Drunk as tea or herbal remedy, it can cure digestive and kidney health and lower stress.

What are the culinary uses of the morning glory?

Certain parts of morning glories are edible. After all, they are relatives of other nightshade crops like paprika, potatoes, and tobacco.

Their roots and stems can be eaten. Although they aren’t that delectable, they’re good enough to fill an empty stomach.

Some chefs use the morning glory to enhance the aroma and taste of certain soups and stir-fried foods. 

But be careful not to eat the flowers and leaves because they’re toxic. 

The seeds can be good to eat for medicinal purposes. However, taking a large amount of them has similar effects to the hallucinogenic drug LSD.

How is the morning glory flower used in traditional medicine?

The morning glory has a wide variety of medicinal uses in China. Primarily, it promotes intestinal and kidney health.

It can alleviate stomach ulcers and constipation. As a laxative, morning glory seeds can help a person empty their bowels.

The flower’s seeds can also act as a water pill that allows the kidneys to expel salt and water through urine, allowing one’s excess fluids to pass and lowering one’s blood pressure.

In the form of tea, morning glory can treat edema by reducing swelling in the legs and trapped fluids in the body.

And besides that, drinking herbal flower tea reduces stress and tension; relieves cough, bronchitis, and other respiratory ailments; and aids a woman to go into labor.

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