Common Name(s):False Roselle, African Rose Mallow
USDA Hardiness Zones:
Foliage: The leaves can be ovate or lobed, but the newer varieties have been bred to have deeply lobed, finely cut leaves like Japanese maples. You’ll find shades of green with red veining through to a deep burgundy.
Flowers: Typical Hibiscus funnel shaped flowers in yellow and red. The flowers are incidental on Hibiscus acetosella and some of the newer cultivars don’t flower at all.
Form: Although Hibiscus acetosella is an upright grower, mature plants can split and flop.
- Hibiscus 'Red Shield' (syn. ‘Coppertone’) - Iridescent maroon leaves and stems with deep red flowers. (3-4' (h) x 4-6' (w) / Zones 8 - 11)
- Hibiscus ‘Panama Red’ - Dark plum foliage and leaves. Bred specifically for hot-humid conditions. Sporadic red flowers. (4' (h) x 4-6' (w) / Zones 9 - 11)
- Hibiscus ‘Panama Bronze’ - Dark green leaves tinged with bronze. Color is more intense in full sun. Also bred specifically for hot-humid conditions. Sporadic red flowers. (4' (h) x 4-6' / Zones 9 - 11)
- Hibiscus 'Garden Leader Gro Big Red' - Deep red leaves, burgundy flowers. (5' (h) x 5-6' (w) / Zones 8 -10)
Fertilize monthly to bi-monthly during the summer, with any balanced fertilizer. Don’t over-feed container plants, unless you have a larger container to move them to.
Pruning is not required, but can be done to shape or control the size of your plant. Branches that grow fast and long will tend to arch and open the center of the plant. Some pruning helps this Hibiscus to maintain a bushy shape. Wind can also take its toll on long branches.
Overwinter indoors, where Hibiscus acetosella is not hardy. You can also take small cuttings in the fall, to overwinter for next spring.