63 Evolvulus glomeratusCommon Names: blue daze, evolvulus Family: Convolvulaceae (morning glory Family)
Evolvulus, or blue daze, is an evergreen subshrub that grows in a low, spreading mound, up to 2-3 ft (0.6-0.9 m) in diameter, but no more than 1 ft (0.3 m) tall. The stems become woody as they age. Leaves and stems are densely downy, covered with a light gray fuzz. Use your tongue to feel the felt-like texture. The egg shaped leaves are about a 0.5 in (1.3 cm) wide and 1 in (2.5 cm) long. The funnel shaped flowers are born individually in leaf axils near the stem tips. They are about 1 in (2.5 cm) across, with five pale lavender or powder blue petals and white throats. Evolvulus blooms profusely and almost continuously, but each flower lasts only a day, opening in the morning and closing by afternoon. The cultivar, 'Blue Daze' is widely available.
Evolvulus glomeratus is native to Brazil and Paraguay. This plant is sometimes confused with Evolvulus pilosus (a.k.a. E. nuttallianus) which occurs in midwestern North America from Montana and North Dakota, south through Arizona and Texas. Both species grow in open plains and prairies on dry sandy or rocky soils.
CultureEvolvulus grows well in full sun in poor sandy soils that are well drained. Light: Evolvulus does best in full sun, but can tolerate a little shade, especially at midday. Moisture: Evolvulus needs a well drained soil, but also frequent watering. It cannot tolerate wet soils at all, and very rainy periods or overwatering will cause fungus problems and lead to premature death. Evolvulus needs very little water in winter, and the humidity should be low when the temperature is low. Hardiness: USDA Zones 8 - 11. This is one plant that likes it hot! In areas that get frost, grow blue daze as an annual or in a container that can be brought inside. Some specimens of blue daze may survive light frosts, especially if they have been mulched. Propagation: Propagate blue daze from softwood stem cuttings or by seed. The stems tend to take root where they touch the ground, so blue daze can be propagated easily by separating rooted stems from the mother plant.
Outdoors, grow blue daze in a sandy, well drained soil. Mulch to prevent competition from weeds. The feltlike gray-green foliage and pale blue flowers make blue daze a standout in beds and borders or as a ground cover. It's especially attractive grown in masses along with yellow or pink flowering plants. Blue daze is spectacular in hanging containers. It is highly tolerant of salt, and makes a fine ornamental for the coastal garden or in a planter on an oceanside balcony. Let it cascade over a window box or a porch planter.
"Evolvulus blue daze" is the most frequently used common name, whereas Evolvulus glomeratus 'Blue Daze' is the correct cultivar name. This plant is sometimes confused with a hardier North American species and sold under the name Evolvulus pilosus 'Blue Daze'. However, the North American species is seldom found in cultivation. The generic name comes from the Latin for "untwist", referring to the nonclimbing habit, unusual among members of the morning glory family.
Steve Christman 08/03/02; updated 9/29/03