Datura is a member of the Solanaceae family. This big, flawless white flower also called Angel’s Trumpet, Moon Lily, Jimson weed, Moon Flower or Belladonna (beautiful lady).
The flower opens after dusk and closes by mid-morning of the following day. Huge, white, trumpet-shaped flowers stay open until the sun rises. The night blooming white flower can sometimes be fooled into blooming on grey cloudy days.
The plant is easy to grow and produces flowers and seed plentifully. Plants ramble and spread while growing to three feet tall. It produces spikey, golfball-sized fruit.
Moonflowers are herbaceous, growing quickly and rapidly self seeds. Leaves are covered by tiny smooth hairs. The plant is a member of the Deadly Nightshade Family.
Some species of Datura have been used by native peoples for the plant’s halucinogenic alkaloids. People trying to imitate Native American ceremonies have poisoned themselves, sometimes fatally. All parts of all Datura plants are poisonous and can be fatal if ingested.
The Solanaceae family includes potato (Solanum tuberosum); tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum); and pepper (Capsicum annuum).
“Jimson weed” may have been corrupted from “Jamestown.” Early colonists were said to behave strangely after eating the plant when no other food was available.