June 23, 2024


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2021 will be the year of the hardy hibiscus | Home & Garden

The National Garden Bureau has declared 2021 “The Year of the Hardy Hibiscus” and The Garden Guy thinks this is absolutely terrific. Actually, I would go a-step further and say it is Summerific!

By hardy hibiscus, the bureau is referring to those with native DNA. You may not be aware but the hardy hibiscus commonly referred to as rose mallow is native to 33 states and Canada. Though you may see those long-lost cousins growing in the ditches and swampy areas, breeders have applied their magic and created dazzling selections.

Such is the case with the Summerific series from Proven Winners. It now boasts almost a dozen choices for summer-lasting bloom. These incredible varieties can let you create a dose of tropical splendor just about anywhere from zone 4-9 (Winston-Salem planting zone is 7b). On the other hand, if you want to add a colorful flash to grandma’s cottage garden then the Summerific hibiscuses can do that, too.

I’ve been growing Summerific Holy Grail for a few years now and I could not be more thrilled. It is one of their taller varieties sporting deep red blooms and dark foliage. Whether I have it in proximity to palms and bananas or as partners to rudbeckias and salvias, it has lived up to the task.

The next ones coming to my garden will be Cranberry Crush and Berry Awesome. Cranberry Crush is a Classic City Award Winner in the University of Georgia trial program and features topical looking scarlet red flowers on a 48-inch-tall plant with a backdrop of deep green maple-like leaves. It will bring in bees and hummers, which makes The Garden Guy do the happy dance.