Sunday, August 11, 2013

Big, Bold and Beautiful - Hardy Hibiscus

Wine colored leaves give this plant an extra punch of color.

In my neighborhood, many of the neighbors have hardy hibiscus in their yards and they are in full bloom. Hardy hibiscus have big, bold, beautiful flowers that are the size of a saucer. They flower in colors of white, pink, red, plum and several have mixed colors in their petals. Their leaf color can range from green to a beautiful dark wine color. Mine are in full bloom and adding lots of color to a garden that is starting to look a bit tired.

'Lady Baltimore'

Hardy hibiscus are easy to grow. They grow in Zones 4-9 and prefer full sun to part shade. They are tall plants that grow from 4 to 6 feet. They will need to be planted to the back of the bed, allowing for 24 to 36 inches of space between plants. When planting hardy hibiscus make sure that you keep moisture to the root system.These plants are very adaptable to most soils and can be propagated from seed.

Hardy hibiscus bloom for about three months beginning in the late summer. They are late to start growing, but the wait is worth it in spectacular 12 inch flowers. In my Zone 6a garden, the plant will die to the ground and regrow the following year.


I have been looking into purchasing several new varieties for my garden.  I would like to add plants with the dark wine colored leaves. The dark leaf color would give some great color to the garden when the plant is not in bloom. Two of the varieties that I am looking into are 'Summer Storm' and 'Kopper King'. I would also like to add 'Peppermint Schnapps' for the unusual bloom which has streaking in the petals.


'Peppermint Schnapps'
If you like big, bold and beautiful flowers in your garden, give the hardy hibiscus a try. It is a show stopper!

Happy Gardening!

Debbie

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