What Kind of Flowers Only Open During a Full Moon?

Lunar blooming flowers are flowers that bloom around the same time as a full moon. These nocturnal blooming flowers remain completely closed throughout the day and open their petals for pollination by bats and moths once the moon comes out. Some night blooming flowers will actually drop their petals by the next morning after pollination is complete.

Some flowers such as the moonflower only open during a full moon.


Moonflower (Datura inoxia) produces white flowers and has dark green, large leaves. The large, trumpet-like flowers of the moonflower open only during a full moon. This flower is also referred to as the Indian apple or thorn apple flower. It is a member of the potato family and forms spiney fruit. All parts of the plant are considered highly poisonous and you should keep them away from children and pets.

Night Blooming Jasmine

Cestrum nocturnum, or night blooming jasmine, is a shrub with glossy leaves and fragrant white flowers. It is a showy moon blooming plant that fills the air with an almost overwhelming perfume. This delicate plant produces the best flowers when placed in full-sun and in USDA hardiness zones 8 through 11 (minimum 10F to 50F). Night blooming jasmine is fast-growing and can become invasive if not properly maintained. The berries of the night blooming jasmine plant are toxic so avoid using this plant around small children and pets.

Night Scented Stock

Night scented stock (Matthiola longipetala) is a desert native with tiny but fragrant purple flowers. Due to the desert's harsh summers, this plant's blooms open only during the winter and spring full moons. The desert shrub reaches a final height of 2 feet after which it sets seeds and dies. A new plant will form during the next year's monsoon season. This fragile desert shrub does best in full sunlight.

Steven White

Steven White is a privately contracted software engineer and efficiency analyst. He has more than five years of experience providing technical support for AT&T broadband customers. Along with his technology background, White enjoys carpentry and plumbing.