Ipomoea is a large genus in the family Convolvulaceae, native to tropical and subtropical America. The genus comprises more than 500 species of herbaceous plants, climbers, shrubs and trees.
Ipomoea produces beautiful and showy, funnel-shaped flowers in a variety of colors. This plant is valuable due to its abundant flowering and rapid growth. Its impressive flowers attract pollinators, such as hummingbirds, bees, moths and other insects.
The genus name comes from the Greek words “isp” (“worm”) and “homoios” (“resembling”), referring to the worm-like twining of plants.
Ipomoea is a flower of duality, meaning either love or mortality.
Interesting facts about Ipomoea:
Is Ipomoea Poisonous?
The seeds of Ipomoea contain the toxin, lysergic alkaloids, a chemical similar to LSD and can be quite dangerous when large amounts of seeds are ingested. Victims may suffer diarrhea, vomiting and hallucinations.
Benefits and Uses
Some Ipomoea species have medicinal properties and are used in the treatment of various ailments. They are used in different parts of the world to combat heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, arthritis, rheumatism, dysentery, constipation, fatigue, hydrocephaly, meningitis, kidney ailments and cancer.
Some species showed analgesic, spasmolitic, spasmogenic, psychotomimetic, hypoglycemic, hypotensive, anticoagulant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and even anticancer properties.
The plants have also been used as food and for ornamental purposes, as well as in religious rituals.
Annuals, Climbers, Perennials, Shrubs, Trees
The flowers come in many colors including white, red, blue, purple and yellow.
Spring, Autumn, Summer
These plants vary in size from 20 cm (8 inches) to 4,5 metres (15 ft) in height.
The plant is very adaptable and will grow in almost any type of soil that is well drained.