(Also known as Convolvulus)
Type of weed: Vine or scrambler
Flower colour(s): Blue-purple
Priority Weed Local Priority Weed. (See more weeds of the Local Priority Weed class.)
Flowering Months: January, February, March, April, May, September, October, November, December
Morning Glory is a vigorous, twining perennial climber.
Leaves are large, light green and heart shaped, usually three lobed. Both leaves and stems are hairy.
Flowers are trumpet shaped with blue to purplish petals and softly hairy to almost hairless green segments (sepals) outside the petals. It flowers mostly spring to autumn.
The plant rarely sets seed.
Don’t confuse with…
Morning Glory could be confused with native climbers such as Snake Vine (Stephania japonica), which also has heart-shaped leaves but tiny greenish flowers. The Native Passionfruits (Passiflora cinnnabarina and P. herbertiana) also have similar leaves.
It is spread in dumped garden waste. New plants grow from stem fragments, rooting at nodes.
Impact on bushland
Morning Glory grows incredibly fast in moist areas, reaching the top of the tree canopy, forming dense shade and smothering vegetation. It is considered to be an ecosystem destroyer.
Lower Blue Mountains. Also in the Cumberland Plain and Nepean River.
- Milk Vine (Marsdenia spp.)
- Wonga Wonga Vine (Pandorea pandorana)
- Water Vine (Cissus antarctica)
- Dusky Coral Pea (Kennedia rubicunda)
- Wombat Berry (Eustrephus latifolius)
- Old Man’s Beard (Clematis aristata)
- not Clematis cultivars — these can also be environmental weeds
Council provides a tool, on its Mountain Landscapes website, to help you choose native alternative plantings. Choose your village, soil, vegetation community and the purpose of your planting, and the tool will give you suggestions.
There are native nurseries in several Blue Mountains villages, including Glenbrook, Lawson and Katoomba. Please also ask at your favourite local nursery.
- Hand remove
- Scrape and paint
Take hold of one runner and gently pull it along the ground towards you. Check points of resistance where fibrous roots grow from the nodes. Cut roots with a knife or dig out with a trowel and continue to follow the runner. The major root systems need to be removed manually or scrape/cut and painted with herbicide. Bag any reproductive parts.
Note: Herbicides that may be used for this weed include Glyphosate.
Please consult the Herbicide page of this website to help you decide whether to spray, how to do it safely and more.
Scrape and paint
With a knife, scrape up to a metre of the stem to reach the layer below the bark/outer layer. Immediately apply herbicide along the length of the scrape.
- A maximum of half the stem diameter should be scraped. Do not ringbark.
- Larger stems (over 1 cm in diameter) should have two scrapes opposite each other.
- Vines can be left hanging in trees after treatment.
Specific control tips for this weed
Follow-up treatment is needed, whichever technique is used.
- Hand remove small areas of seedlings.
- Gently pull up runners and treat nodes with herbicide; scrape and paint remaining roots and stems.
- Scrape each stem as far as possible and paint with herbicide.
- Spray dense thickets with herbicide if there are no native plants nearby.
- If the plant has grown up into the canopy of a tree or shrub, cut each suspended vine stem to allow the parts in the tree canopy to die.
Do not damage native vegetation by pulling vines from trees; the dead vine can also be habitat for microbats and other small animals.
Suspend cut material off the ground. Once dead it will decompose in place.
Refer to the NSW Department of Primary Industry’s Noxious and Environmental Weed Control Handbook.
For key points on these techniques:
Local Priority Weed
- The plant should be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed.
- Plants under 4 metres in height should be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed.
- The spread of this plant should be adequately contained to prevent spread impacting on priority assets. Weed notices will only be issued for these weeds under special circumstances.