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Heartleaf Rosemallow Hibiscus martianus

Previously known as:

  • Hibiscus cardiophyllus
Description

Heart-leaf Hibiscus is a native of Texas, where it can be found growing in canyons, along slopes, and hillsides in chaparrals, matorrals and thorn forests.   It is a heat-tolerant shrub that blooms crimson red in the summer through fall in full sun.  When grown in other locations that do not experience frost, it can be ever blooming.  

Not a showy plant until it blooms, when it becomes one of natures most spectacular bloomers.  

Two to three inch solitary flowers appear at the tips of the branches.  Pruning of the tips of the stems will provide a continued compact habit while also promoting more blooms. When pruning, keep in mind that flowers will blossom on new growth. During the hottest part of the season, when other plants may not look their best, these flowers will give color to your garden.  

The flowers and fruits of this hibiscus serves as a main source of food for the caterpillar of the Yohoa Scrub-hairstreak butterfly which lays it eggs on the flowers.  The Mallow Scrub-hairstreak and Gray Hairstreak caterpillars also feed on this plant.

Although adaptable to a variety of soils, good drainage is needed.  If not provided, the plant can rot,  

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  Although adaptable to most soil conditions, when good drainage in not provided in heavy clay soil the plant will rot.

 

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#hummingbird friendly#showy flowers#deciduous#heat tolerant#drought tolerant#shrub#frost tender#deciduous shrub#showy leaves#perennial flowers#long bloom time#pollinator plant#larval host plant#compact habit#bird friendly#dry soils tolerant#butterfly friendly#host plant#compact#container plant#showy#perennial#butterfly caterpillar host#butterfly garden#pollinator garden
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#hummingbird friendly#showy flowers#deciduous#heat tolerant#drought tolerant#shrub#frost tender#deciduous shrub#showy leaves#perennial flowers#long bloom time#pollinator plant#larval host plant#compact habit#bird friendly#dry soils tolerant#butterfly friendly#host plant#compact#container plant#showy#perennial#butterfly caterpillar host#butterfly garden#pollinator garden
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Hibiscus
    Species:
    martianus
    Family:
    Malvaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Landscape plant with a long blooming period.
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Texas to Mexico
    Distribution:
    TX
    Wildlife Value:
    Hummingbirds, bees and butterflies are attracted to the blooms. Birds eat the fruits.
    Play Value:
    Attractive Flowers
    Attracts Pollinators
    Buffer
    Colorful
    Easy to Grow
    Wildlife Food Source
    Wildlife Larval Host
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    heat, drought
    Dimensions:
    Height: 1 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Perennial
    Shrub
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Mounding
    Rounded
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Shallow Rocky
    Soil pH:
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    8a, 8b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    The fruits are an oval-shaped capsule.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Solitary
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Long Bloom Season
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Saucer
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    Two to three inch solitary red flowers form at the tips of the branches. It flowers in the heat of the summer when other plants are not.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Gray/Silver
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Dentate
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Silvery/green heart shaped leaves are quite showy.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Green
    Bark Description:
    Smooth greenish-brown bark with tiny elongated spots. Older twigs are gray.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Leafy stems
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Naturalized Area
    Patio
    Slope/Bank
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Border
    Hedge
    Mass Planting
    Small groups
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Hummingbirds
    Pollinators
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Dry Soil
    Heat