‘High’ secrets of Morning Glory

Morning glory, botanically known as Ipomoea, is one of my favorite flowers. It’s super easy to grow and doesn’t require too much care – just perfect for lazy gardeners.

dark blue morning glory plant
© Shorena Ratiani Photography

You can grow it from seed. For better results, seeds can be nicked and soaked in water for 24 hours before planting.

The most popular varieties of morning glory plants are native to Japan or Mexico and largely grown in North America and Europe.

dark blue morning glory
© Shorena Ratiani Photography

If your new morning glory plant hasn’t flowered yet, be patient. Morning glories can take a couple of months, up to 120 days from seed to flower, to burst out in blooms, especially if you planted the vine from seed.

© Shorena Ratiani Photography

But this beautiful climbing plant has its secrets.

Eating morning glory flowers is not dangerous, however the seeds can be poisonous, especially in large quantities. Morning glory seeds can get you high because they contain LSA, a chemical similar to LSD.

Typically, eating morning glory seeds is not dangerous, but in large enough quantities, they can cause hallucinations, physical symptoms such as nausea and diarrhea, and overdose.

morning glory
© Shorena Ratiani Photography

Have a look at my morning glory gallery – I found dark and light purple, and also pink flowers during my photo walks.

Beautiful orange: blooming trumpet flowers

Climbing plants are my favorites and the flowering ones are my favorites among favorites. Trumpet vines are flowering in Tbilisi right now and it makes me happy!

Trumpet flowers. Photography by Shorena Ratiani

Trumpet vine (Campsis radicans), also known as Trumpet Creeper, Cow Itch Vine or Hummingbird Vine, is a species of flowering plant of the family Bignoniaceae. It is native to the eastern US and naturalized in parts of the western US, as well as in Ontario, parts of Europe, and in Latin America. Growing to a height of 33 ft, it is a vigorous,  deciduous  woody  vine, notable for its showy trumpet-shaped flowers. It inhabits woodlands and riverbanks, and is also a popular garden plant and a living fence.

Trumpet flowers. Photography by Shorena Ratiani

The beautiful tubular flowers range in color from yellow to orange or red. Blooming occurs throughout the summer and into fall. Following its flowering, the trumpet vines produce attractive bean-like seedpods.

Trumpet flowers. Photography by Shorena Ratiani

As its ‘nickname” – Hummingbird vine – shows the Trumpet vine flowers are very attractive to hummingbirds, and many types of birds like to nest in the dense foliage.

Trumpet creeper flowers are irresistible to butterflies as well, and many gardeners grow the vine to attract them.

Trumpet flowers. Photography by Shorena Ratiani

The Trumpet vine grows vigorously so gardeners need to keep it under control by pruning otherwise the vines will cover everything and climb and cover trellises, walls, arbors and fences. I wouldn’t actually mind Trumpet vines invading my garden but I would need to have much more space 😄😄

Trumpet flowers. Photography by Shorena Ratiani

Like the daffodil, Trumpet vines symbolize new beginnings.

Here are my photos of lovely bright Trumpet vine flowers. Enjoy!

Daisy – the beginning of a new day

Several quick facts about my favorite flowers – daisies:

The daisy is a flowering plant belonging to the family Asteraceae (also called Compositae).

Daisies belong to the family of ‘vascular plants’ which make up almost 10% of all flowering plants on Earth.

There are approximately 4000 species of daisies of different sizes, shapes and colors.

Daisies are found on every single continent except Antarctica.

Daisies can live in both wet and dry climates, and they are resistant to pesticides and insects. Not a picky plant, daisies grow well both in full sun and in part sun or even shady areas.

The Daisy is a herbaceous plant that can grow from 3 inches to 4 feet (!) in height, depending on the species.

The daisy plant leaf texture varies and can be smooth or covered with trichomes (little hairs).

Some daisy species are annual, lasting only one year, and some are biennial (life cycle ends after two years). The color of the flower depends on the species. The most common daisy is white with a yellow center, but there can be found purple ones with a brown center, red with yellow, orange with yellow, pink with yellow center, yellow with a dark red center, blue with green center and so on.

The flower symbolism associated with the daisy is one of purity, innocence, loyal love, beauty, patience and simplicity.

The name Daisy comes from the Old English “daes eage,” meaning “day’s eye.” The name derives from the way they close their petals in the evening, and open again in the morning, which symbolizes the beginning of a new day.

Daisies have been popular flowers in history and are believed to be more than 4,000 years old.

Daisies have lots of medicinal properties.

Daisy leaves can make a tasty addition to salads (they are closely related to the artichoke and are high in Vitamin C).

The largest game of “He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not” was played by 331 people in Milan, Italy. Participants plucked daisy petals to determine if their secret crush loved them back.

Daisies are often depicted in meadows in Medieval paintings and were described as a “flowery mead.”

Egyptian ceramics were decorated with daisies. The English daisy (Bellis perennis) is considered a stubborn weed in North American lawns.

The daisy family was classified by Paul Dietrich Giseke, a German botanist and close friend of the Swedish ‘father of modern taxonomy’ Carl Linnaeus.

A daisy actually consists of two flowers in one. The (usually) white petals count as one flower and the cluster of (usually) tiny yellow disc petals that form the ‘eye’ is technically another.

Daisy leaves can make a tasty addition to salads and contain Vitamin C.

Bees just LOVE daisies. These include Goldenrod, making them an important friend of honey makers.

Now have a look at some daisy photos I’ve taken recently.

China Calandine – a real hero survivor

This lovely plant with lovely bright yellow flowers is China Calandine (or Greater Calandine).

China Calandine. Photo by Shorena Ratiani

It grows everywhere, literally everywhere – on ground, on rocks, anywhere where it can find a little bit of soil.

To me this plant is a real symbol of life – it can even drill into cement to find a place to thrive. China Calandine is a real hero survivor!

China Calandine. Photo by Shorena Ratiani

I’m also fascinated with the colors of its leaves. Its colors are so different – when it is in full bloom or when it turns to ‘autumn mode’.

China Calandine. Photo by Shorena Ratiani

The botanical name of China Calandine is Chelidonium majus. It can be found growing wild in almost all European countries, West Asia, North Africa, and North America. The plant prefers dry sunny areas and is often found next to buildings, or thickets.

China Calandine. Photo by Shorena Ratiani

Greater Calandine is a perennial plant belonging to the poppy family (Papaveraceae). It can grow up to 60 cm in height and the whole plant contains a large amount of yellow that turns orange when it comes into contact with air.

China Calandine. Photo by Shorena Ratiani

The whole plant is widely used in herbal medicine in many countries. I remember how my grandmother collected and dried them for medical purposes – it was a pity that I never asked what ailments it was believed to cure.

Part of my greater calandine photos in my gallery.

I hope you all have a bright and happy day.


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Tree Textures on a Rainy Day

It was raining for several days in Tbilisi. Usually I prefer to be at home looking out at the rainy city from my window but not in summer! I absolutely adore walking in the rain, jumping in puddles and sometimes, when no one is watching, I even dance.

And of course I love taking photographs while people are trying to find a sheltered place to stay dry 😀

It was raining hard enough for people to look at me as if I was crazy.

I was photographing wet tree textures this time.

More photos of wet tree trunks. Their color and character appear so attractive to me and it’s worth getting soaking wet 😀

If you would like to see more interesting texture photos please check out my Texture Photography page.

Check out my painting and drawing portfolio and Photography pages.

You can also find my work here:

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