HIBISCUS

HIBISCUS

The Hibiscus genus includes thousands of cultivars derived from the hybridization of the Hibiscus rosa sinensis, a perennial, shrubby species native to China. Its flowers are made up of five petals that form a funnel-shaped calyx, at the centre of which are very visible stamens. The flowers come in a wide variety of colours ranging from white to red to yellow to bronze. The corolla can be simple, double, or multiple, depending on the number of petals (5 or multiples of 5). In the Polynesian Islands, these flowers have a symbolic meaning that is important for young adults: worn behind the right ear, they signify a love relationship; worn behind the left ear, it means that the person is ready to encounter his or her soul mate. This genus belongs to the Malvaceae family, which includes, among its most well known plants, the common mallow. In Italy, this plant is cultivated as an annual because it does not tolerate winter temperatures that fall below 0C. It vegetates well in the sun and requires air temperatures above 13C. It does not tolerate windy areas. The potting compost must be organic, soft, and very permeable. It is best to prepare it by mixing 60% peat with 40% expanded clay or perlite, in order to obtain a substratum that drains the water, and at the same time provides the roots with constant humidity. Irrigation must be frequent because the hibiscus is not resistant to drought. Feed with a complex soluble fertilizer possibly enriched with microelements and with plenty of phosphorus and potassium, to be dissolved in the irrigation water.

pianta da fiore ibisco