Sunday, August 1, 2010

Texas Star Hibiscus

Just look at this beauty!  It's a Texas Star Hibiscus (or Scarlet Hibiscus), Hibiscus coccineus, that I bought at a plant sale last summer.  It bloomed all summer long and when winter came along, I cut it back, put it in the greenhouse and watered it regularly.  I brought it out this spring, watered it just about every day, and look at my reward:

A few days ago, the plant began to show signs of imminent blossom so I grabbed my camera and began to document the process.  

This hibiscus is a slender, shrubby perennial that dies back in winter and re-sprouts in the spring and it must be protected from freezing.  As with most hibiscus, the flowers last only one day but new ones continue to open all summer and into the fall.  They do best in full sun but also need plenty of water to bloom.  The scarlet hibiscus occurs naturally in swamps, marshes and ditches, from southern Georgia and Alabama to central Florida and Texas.  Established plants can have one to several stems up to 7 feet tall. (Mine is about 3 1/2 feet tall.)  The five petaled flowers are brilliant crimson red and anywhere from 6-8 inches across.

It's an absolutely stunning plant (as you can see :) and I'm thrilled it makes its home on my back patio!


  1. Where did you get this hibiscus? I had one when I lived in VA, and have not been able to find one here in Texas! I'd love to have one again! Yours is BEAUTIFUL!

  2. Hi Deena...I got this plant from a local plant nursery in the hills of South Texas about 2 years ago. I wish I had more specific info for you :/ But I don't. But this plant is one of my favorites on my back is *beautiful* when it blooms. Thank you for visiting my blog! Are you in Texas?

  3. Hi there!
    My husband ran across a little nursery in Daytona Beach and brought one home a few days ago. The man he bought it from told him they were easy to take cuttings from too. We can't wait to see it in full bloom.
    Great picture!

  4. Deena,
    If you live in the DFW area, a Place named Marshall grain Co. in Grapevine has two sizes, a three gallon for around $30-$40 and a 2qt. for $9. I went for the $9 the plant is about a foot tall. The 3 gal. about 2 1/2 - 3ft.

    Marshall Grain Co.
    3525 William D. Tate Ave.,
    Grapevine, TX 76051 just off 121 hwy.

  5. Hi Diane,

    Great photos of your Texas Star. I just planted my first one two days ago and it's already showing signs of growth! I live fairly close to you, in the Plum Creek community in Kyle, and I was wondering if you've tried the Lord Baltimore hibiscus. Texas A&M gave it a SuperStar rating, and I've read good things about it, but I was hoping for some first hand experience from someone who has tried to grow them in our climate. You have a great blog, by the way. I'll be back to read more soon.


  6. Thanks Trevor! Nice to hear from you :) My Texas Star is getting ready to bloom again...can't wait for that. No, I have not seen the Lord Baltimore hibiscus, but I'll surely keep my eyes open for it. Yes, we are neighbors :) Thank you for visiting me!

  7. When I planted my Texas Star a few years ago it had several shoots coming from the mother plant. Now, there is only one. I have two of these in my yard and both have done this. They come back every year and bloom wonderfully but with only one shoot. Is this normal or should it have many more like the several Lacecap Hibiscus that I have.

  8. I live in PA and have one, didn't know what it was called until i ran across you while searchiing to ID this beauty. Thanks Diane

  9. is my email diane if you wish to comment back

  10. Thanks for the post. My mom was given one, from a neighbor. It is fixing to bloom here in Ponchatoula Louisiana. Could not wait to see the flower.......

  11. A man in Dublin, TX had some for sale when we rode our motorcycles down there last month. They are gorgeous. I'd have bought one, but it wouldn't have fit in our saddlebags..LOL
    Thanks for the wonderful info you have here, Diane.

  12. Mine is perrineal, comes back from the roots every year. After the bloom sheds it leaves a pod. Once the pod dries you can open it and it contains tiny seeds. I have not tried growing them from seed but plan to next spring. I hope it works, it is a beautiful flower!