Late Bloomer – Hibiscus Syriacus!
If there is one flower that reminds me of a tropical vacation it has to be the Hibiscus. You can’t help but pluck one of the flowers and tuck it behind your ear! How wonderful we can bring that feeling to our own back yard with the Hibiscus Syriacus, a hardy deciduous shrub with eye catching flowers that range from white to deep pink and purple with striking stamen.
The Hibiscus syriacus is commonly referred to as the rose of Sharon or shrub althea. They are a genus from the Mallow family with several different species and are native to China and India. They are widely used in gardening, agriculture and manufacturing. This vigorous, upright, vase shaped shrub is a late bloomer and will be a welcome hit of color in your garden.
Hibiscus are relatively easy to grow and once established are heat and drought tolerant. It is hardy in zones 5-8 and will grow 8-12 feet tall. With the ability to shape this plant it makes a great summer privacy hedge, a strong grower, it does well in mixed beds and perennial borders. Try it in containers where you can move it to take advantage of the plentiful blooms that are just beginning when most other flowering shrubs have stopped.
Varieties Available at Kato’s:
‘Blue Satin’ – produces striking blue flowers with a deep purple throat
‘Blushing Bride’ – produces many large, double, funnel shaped blooms in pale blushing pink to rich pink
‘Collie Mullens’ – has double deep reddish-pink flowers with a hint of purple
‘Diana’ – has large single, pure white petals with crimped edges
‘Red Heart’ – produces bold white trumpet-shaped flowers with ruby-red centers