Ipomoea purpurea ‘Star of Yelta’

Today, a few photographs of this persisting bloomer located at the front entrance to UBC Botanical Garden. Ipomoea purpurea ‘Star of Yelta’ is an introduction from Thompson & Morgan Seeds. T & M describe this cultivar as having half-hardy annual seeds, meaning that in cool temperate climates, it can be sown early in the season once the danger of frost has passed (but before the soil has warmed). In the maritime climate here at UBC, ‘Star of Yelta’ has persisted from year to year in areas of bare soil without additional seed-sowing by the horticulturists. Given that the parent species has been declared a noxious weed in some jurisdictions (though none in our region) and has naturalized in some pantropical areas, the staff here are monitoring the behaviour of this cultivar. Despite its beauty, it may have to be eradicated if it shows additional indications of potential weediness in our climate.

Ipomoea purpurea 'Star of Yelta'
Ipomoea purpurea 'Star of Yelta'
Ipomoea purpurea 'Star of Yelta'

21 responses to “Ipomoea purpurea ‘Star of Yelta’”

  1. bev

    It’s prettier than our east coast weed, ‘Grandpa Ott’. I wish I had never heard of that one.

  2. Mandy Macdonald

    Wonderful photos! It’s enough to make you like bindweed!

  3. Jane Levy Campbell

    Magical close-up photos nicely paired with in situ photo. It does tempt me to plant it to be able to do a botanical painting of it, but I’m wary of any ipomoea because of rampant invasion of a common white perennial form that will take over any space it can here in in Portland, OR. In a contest between it and our other most invasive, Himalayan blackberry, I think it just might win out. I fight both constantly in my garden. The tiniest bit of root will sprout. Ah, but that color…..

  4. Carol Burton

    I think the “common white form” Jane talks about is Convolvulus, not Ipomea, – common name bindweed. Grandpa Ott is not a weed here in Washington. They may politely re-seed a little but not excessively, and they are tricky to raise from seed.

  5. Jamie

    Beautiful photos.
    Is that a relative of the Morning Glory?
    We have Morning Glories, in my community garden, and yes, they *do* grow like weeds. In the San Francisco Bay Area they are considered an invasive, I’m pretty sure of this.
    If it were up to me, they wouldn’t have been planted at all. But they are very pretty.

  6. Daniel Mosquin

    Yes, I suppose a common name for this would be ‘Star of Yelta’ purple morning glory.

  7. Norma

    It made me cry when I looked at the last entry and ask God why I was so important that Jesus who made such an awesome flower was willing to die for me alone if no one else wanted to be saved.
    Thanks for your beautiful displays. They do bring tears to my eyes at times because they are so beautiful.

  8. swamprose

    A timely post. I have been watching the Ipomoea purpurea in my Toronto neighbourhood for a few years. The seed survives our winters and has gone from a few plants which were lovely improvements to chain link fences to something which I now find in disturbed or waste areas. There is no question in my mind that it is invasive in eastern Canada. On the other hand, I have grown Ipomoea tricolor, the classic ‘Heavenly Blue’ for years because native plant gardeners have their soft spots and my grandmother grew it–and every morning is a new and wonderful blue gift. However, this Ipomoea does not overwinter, and every year, I have to plant new seeds. I am a native plant person, and I spend a lot of time photographing native plants–I see a lot of wild places, and it is getting really hard, depressing to see how invasive plants are gutting habitat. There seems to be no protection. And there is a good financial argument for protection–I despair. This plant is just another thing I am going to find pretty soon in some wild place. The UBC forum reveals how persistent Ipomoea is in BC. http://www.botanicalgarden.ubc.ca/forums/showthread.php?t=2636

  9. Daniel Mosquin

    The forum thread refers mainly to Calystegia sepia, another (closely-related) plant also called morning glory. That one is an incessant weed.

  10. Dana

    I have grown Start of Yelta for YEARS in my USDA Zone 6b, in Oklahoma. I was over doing things the first year to sow it early indoors in peat pots – the darn thing comes back year after year- one vine could easily produce 50 to 100 progeny the next year and it has spread from the original area to 3 more. Despite the fact that I go out in mid-summer and fill 3 or 4 huge trash bags with these vines, I do not consider it a noxious weed – just a beautiful nuisance.
    I will add an additional point that I did not notice here, the star pattern does stay stable in the succeeding generations. Thus far, my vines have not reverted to plain purple Morning Glories. The pattern did however fade in this summer’s hideous heat and drought.
    Oh yes, and the foliage on this year’s vines is quite lacy due to a June visit of Japanese beetles.

  11. john murtaugh

    I am quite certain that the standard purple morning glory does not overwinter in Toronto and like climates but it does sprout many seeds the next season.
    I have often wondered if the heavenly blue variety produces seed that reverts to the standard, but still beautiful, purple flower.
    I first became interested in morning glories during the late sixties but never did ingest them. Later, I read about Darwin’s experiments with them and have always wanted to try crossing different varieties. Maybe next year…

  12. Harriet Rycroft

    Luckily it isn’t invasive here in Britain – but by the same token doesn’t grow very big in our damp and chilly climate.
    Is it really Yelta? I always thought it was Yalta – internet sources seem divided. Yalta is in the Crimea, Yelta is in Australia. Can anyone tell me the story behind the name?
    And I am very fond of Grandpa Ott.

  13. Diana Ferguson

    Beautiful. The plant and the pics

  14. iris lefleur

    I have a lovely star of yelta against my house in chilly vermont zone 3, that reseeds and also grows back each year, it covers my rain barrel nicely and grows up to the gutter, i am now finding it growing farther away from the original spot and thinking it could become invasive if I let it go. I believe it grows back because of its warm spot against the house foundation. But the seeds seem to not mind the subzero temps!

  15. elizabeth a airhart

    monet had the same issue of invasive plants in his garden
    result de traduction pour http givenews / is a blog from the gardens
    you might like it daniel they are getting the gardens ready for autum
    do you all know about mrs wilmont’s ghost lovely storey

  16. Wendy Cutler

    Do they really look like fancy flashlights, or are those just amazing photos?

  17. Daniel Mosquin

    The Royal Horticultural Society’s Plant Finder uses ‘Star of Yelta’, and that’s our general go-to source here at UBC Botanical Garden for cultivar names. Plus, the originator of the cultivar markets it under ‘Star of Yelta’, so there’s no ambiguity there.

  18. Katherine Ralls

    could you please give complete address for subscribing to blog from Monet’s garden? Thanks

  19. Connie Hoge

    To Wendy, Yes on both.
    Here in Maryland (z6) mine reseeds every year. It is against a brick wall. I think it would reseed anyway. When enjoying my garden every day, I pinch off the spent blooms and seedpods, pocketing them for the trash. I still get many volunteers within about a 10′ radius. I pull the ones I don’t want/need. This is in a rather medium-sized town garden. They would wreak havoc in the landscape.
    I grew ‘Heavenly Blue ‘ in So. California. It reseeded, too. But you had to water it for it to do more than sprout and die.

  20. Equisetum

    I do like the I. purpurea cultivars, which seem to hold their dark purple color through generations of seeding themselves, unlike seedlings from Heavenly Blue (listed by many sellers as I. tricolor), which revert to a blatant (or worse, muddy) magenta.
    Mine were derived (long ago) from the T&M cultivar in the picture and from Fragrant Path’s
    ( Fragrant Path )
    Black Morning Glory (about which Ed Rasmussen, FP’s owner, says “.. I suppose about as black as most flowers assigned that moniker”), whose flower is darker with the white center smaller –for the first several generations. Like all Ipomeas I’ve grown, the purpureas do pop up in the vegetable garden and on gopher mounds (places where the soil is bared) and cover an alarming amount of territory, but they are easy to pull up when I need their space.
    The Ipomea perplex is one of those nomenclature conundrums I always mean to try to work out, as the species names (in the biological sense, reproductive incompatiblity) so often don’t match the plant catalogue binomials…

  21. chico

    funny how a flower so many view as a weed can be so hard to grow when you WANT it to grow! I’ve always loved morning glories, such beautiful shades of blue and purple.

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