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Hibiscus moscheutos (Swamp rosemallow)
Species Distribution Map: Click to enlarge
Map Color Key © 2013 BONAP

Hibiscus moscheutos

Swamp rosemallow

(syn. Hibiscus palustris)

This shrublike herbaceous perennial is a vigorous grower with large, glabrous leaves and 4-5" wide flowers that range from pink to white. The flowers last only for one day, but they appear consistently until the end of the season. An amazing show of color and grace!

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Height

3-7 Feet

Spread

3-4 Feet

Spacing

24 Inches

Bloom Color

Light Pink

USDA Hardiness Zone 5-8

Swamp rosemallow Interesting Notes

One Native American tribe used this plant to cure inflammed bladders. 1st collected by English planthunter Rev. John Banister in colonial Virginia c. 1680.  A gunman mistakenly shot and killed him while he collected plants. Bloomed for Jefferson at Monticello in July, 1767. - Heritage Flower Farm

Have you ever pondered upon the strange name given to those sticky masses of sugar that are roasted over a campfire? The answer may be found among the vegetation of the wetlands. The saga actually begins over in Europe where the inhabitants would collect a certain plant from marshy areas. The roots of the plant could be boiled to produce a white sticky substance. Even though it was discovered to have no medical properties, it still satisfied the sweet tooth of children. - "Would a Mallow by Any Other Name Taste So Sweet?", Chincoteague Natural History Association

Rose Mallow is a tall perennial native to eastern and southern N America, where it grows in moist places, marshes and on lake shores. The garden varieties can be grown as half-hardy annuals, blooming in 4 1/2 - 5 months from seed. They should be started in February to March in a warm greenhouse and grown on in large individual pots. Soaking the seed for 24 hours before sowing is beneficial to germination. They can be used in the border, as a temporary hedge or grown in large containers. The growth is strong with lush, dark green foliage and numerous huge, 8-10" flowers in pink, red and white shades. Rose mallows need a warm and sunny situation and moisture-retentive, rich soil. In northern gardens the season is often too short for full development of the flowers. 'Disco Belle' is the earliest variety. In US zones 5-10 it can be treated as perennial, overwintering easily with good drainage and the root crown protected with a layer of mulch. In colder areas the deep roots can be lifted in the autumn and stored in a frost-free cellar. - http://www.pp.clinet.fi/~mygarden/hibimos.htm

Hibiscus moscheutos Growing and Maintenance Tips

This plant needs rich soils, consistant moisture and full sun. Good air circulation may help to prevent disease. Requires fertilizer due to its rapid growth in early summer and may require staking. Propagated by seed, greenwood cuttings, root division and layering. Mulch during winter to protect roots from frost and prune in early spring for bushier growth. Best effect when planted in groupings of 3 or more. Plant in areas that remain moist such as the banks of a stream or pond, shrub beds or entranceways for most dramatic effect.

Key Characteristics & Attributes

Butterflies
Butterflies
Full Sun
Full Sun
Part Sun
Part Sun
Summer
Summer
Moist
Moist
Salt Tolerance
Salt Tolerance
Wetlands
Wetlands

Additional Information

Season of Interest (Flowering)
Late Summer
Soil Moisture Needs
Wet
Plug Type
Landscape Plug™
Propagation Type
Open pollinated
Attributes
Moist Sun
Native to North America