Friday, January 20, 2012

The Confederate Rose

Confederate rose (Hibiscus mutabilis 'Versicolor')Image via Wikipedia

Many may be under the impression that the Confederate Rose is a member of the rose family. However, one look at this magnificent plant in person and you will soon discover it has very little to do with any actual rose as we know it. The Confederate Rose is actually a member of the Hibiscus family. Other names for this flowering plant are: cotton rosemallow.

English: Hibiscus splendens - flower, a rainfo...Image via Wikipedia
 
Some interesting characteristics of this plant have to do with the blossoms, in early morning they are white, and by mid day the blossoms turn soft pink and in the evening, the flower turns deep pink. There is a variety of this plant that have blossoms that turn red in the evening. This variety is called, “Rubra” and is stunning. The plant grows fast and needs a place in the garden that will allow it to grow properly.

Confederate rose (Hibiscus mutabilis ' Vericolor')Image via Wikipedia

The blooming season of the Confederate rose is usually from summer through fall. Propagation by cuttings will take root ideally in the Spring time however, the Confederate rose can be propagated almost any time of the year, making it a favorite among gardeners.

Confederate rose (‘’Hibiscus mutabilis’’)Image via Wikipedia

In areas that experience a frost, the Confederate rose will not reach it's full potential in height, which can be almost twenty feet tall. However, keeping the plant to a 5-8 foot height will yield more flowers typically. The flowers themselves are massive measuring any where from 5 inches in diameter to larger and real show stoppers when the plant is in good health. The plant is flexible can handle partial shade or full sun and likes a rich soil, but has been known to thrive under less than ideal conditions.
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