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Light:   Full Sun
Soil:  Moist, well-drained, fertile, loose
Planting DepthApproximately 1/2 inch deep
Days To Germination:  Approximately one week to ten days

Even though moonflowers bloom during the night, they still require at least six hours of full sunlight per day to produce blooms.  The seeds can be started either indoors or out depending upon climate.  In cooler regions it is recommended to start them indoors at least six to eight weeks before outdoor planting would normally begin.   This ensures a good head start to the normal growing season.   If you don't know the frost dates for your area you can check them out at Virtual Gardener by going to the "regional gardener" section and then to "find your frost date".

Whether planting outdoors or starting them indoors in pots, it is recommended to lightly nick the seed's outer shell.  Using a fingernail file or sharp serrated knife, nick the seed's shell while holding each individual seed with a pair of tweezers or pliers.  Once the seed coat is nicked, soak the seeds overnight in warm water and plant them the following day. 

If starting the seeds indoors, use a good commercial seed starting or potting mix.  It is preferable to keep them under grow-lights for at least 14 hours per day but if this isn't feasible then a bright warm windowsill will also do.    Moonflowers cannot take cold so make sure that wherever you start them that they will not be subjected to cold soil temperatures which can cause rotting or stunted growth.

Unlike it's cousin the morning glory which prefers poor soil to grow the most impressive flowers, moonflowers thrive in rich fertile soil that has plenty of moisture.  Adding compost to the area moonflowers are to grow in outside is a good way to achieve this.   Compost also helps keep the soil loose which encourages root growth.   Commercial fertilizers will also do if compost is not available.  As always when using commercial fertilizers, follow manufacturer's instructions. 

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