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Are Hibiscus Invasive

Posted by davemichigan zone 6a SE Michig (My Page) on
Fri, Mar 18, 11 at 18:20

I got some seeds from exchange and would like to try them this year. While searching the net, I found that some listed them as invasive. Do you know how bad they are in zone 6a (SE Michigan)?

Thanks.

(Since they are collected seeds, I don't have all the information, but I have Sunset, Bubblegum Pink, Moy Grande, and some unidentified except for colors).


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

I have found that Rose-of-Sharon, H. syriacus, can self-sow to the point of being a problem. Perhaps certain varieties are worse than others.


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

OP is talking about perennials. The responder is talking about the shrub. The problem with common names again.


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

Sorry Dave, two of the varieties you list are tropical (H. rosa-sinensis), the one 'Moy Grande' is a hybrid based on some of the perennial species.

In any case, as for any being invasive in this part of the continent, see my first post. ;) And even then, it's only more of a nuisance.


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

OMG...

are you talking about mallow?? ... lol.. another common name????

let me put it to you this way ....

i bought a 2 inch pot at hidden lakes [one of many bad plants they sold] ....

within 3 years.. i covered a 10 foot square area ... and i went after it with roundup ..

and 5 years later... they are still sprouting ...

i hate them them with a passion equivalent to the white hot heat of the sun ...

and for a shiny penny.. i will tell you how i really feel .. lol

though i cant say they escaped that bed ...

ken


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

Ken, are you referring to Malva sylvestris?


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

OP is talking about perennials. The responder is talking about the shrub. The problem with common names again.

Well, we don't know that exactly :-) Hibiscus is not a common name - it's a genus of plants that include about 200 species of evergreen and deciduous shrubs, annuals and herbaceous perennials. Just based on the cultivar names provided by the OP, it appears the seeds received belong to a couple of semitropical species that would be considered annuals in his climate and a hybrid perennial. None of these would be considered invasive.

OTOH, as CPG has pointed out, Hibiscus syriacus or rose of Sharon, can be invasive in some areas and is on the watch list of a few states. And malva, while related to hibiscus, are not the same plant at all.

My take is that this not an issue of confusion regarding common names but a lack of detail with the botanical name :-)


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

  • Posted by mxk3 z5b/6 MI (My Page) on
    Sat, Mar 19, 11 at 13:25

I have no clue what the OP is talking about re: shrub vs. perennial, but want to chime in and say I do not find H. moscheutos invasive.


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

hmmm.... now I see that one packet was labelled "Rose of Sharon Hibiscus - annual - self sows)." Maybe the person who gave me the seeds was trying to warn....

I think I am going to try some and be careful about the seed pods.

I knew there were annual and perennial hibiscus, but I didn't know shrub is another category. I have seen some nice shrub hibiscus in my neighborhood. Are those hibiscus or malva?


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Nope, not invasive

I've never found any of the perennial hardy hibiscus to be invasive either by vegetative growth habit or self-seeding, in any climate in which I've grown them, from Gulf Coast zone 8b to current zone 6a. This includes H. moscheutos hybrids and native species which are hardy well up into the Midwest and Northeast such as H. militaris/laevis (halberd-leaf Hibiscus), a generally white or pink-flowered variety (mine is pure white) which blooms much of the summer here and has remained a small patch in an unmulched front bed for the last half-dozen years or so.

There are a number of hardy Hibiscus species worth trying in the perennial garden (another is H. coccineus); their only real drawback as far as I'm concerned is they are often highly attractive to Japanese beetles. H. moscheutos in particular is apparently almost as tasty as roses.


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

'Rose of Sharon' is the common name usually applied to a deciduous shrub form of Hibiscus, Hibiscus syriacus (also to Hypericum, but that's another issue). There is some biblical association with this plant (native to parts of the Holy Land/Syria), hence the common name. It is a very commonly planted flowering shrub but can self-sow rather freely in some areas, hence the cautions about potential invasive properties.

Annual species of Hibiscus are not typically referred to in this manner but with common names, anything goes :-) Often you will see these called 'rose mallow', 'swamp mallow' or in one case, 'Confederate rose mallow'. And I agree that these are not known to be invasive.

Common names ARE confusing....no way around it! It would have been far more helpful if the seed provider had taken the time or effort to label the seeds with both parts of the botanical name, genus AND species, but at least the cultivar names can provide some direction. Personally, I would be very cautious about purchasing or trading for any plant or seed that was only identified by common name or partial botanical name. Without the full botanical name, you just have no idea what you are getting. And even that can be suspect at times -- know your supplier!!

Here is a link that might be useful: rose of Sharon mythology


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

dave...

its NEVER a problem to try anything ...

and then you work toward a full and proper ID ... pix here would achieve such ..

and then you research to fully understand what you have.. and where it is going ... and you try to accomplish this.. BEFORE IT SETS SEED ... lol ..

then you either leave it.. or destroy it ..

i doubt there is ever any harm in trying... the harm comes in forgetting about it.. for 2 or 3 years.. lol

ken


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

That was a very interesting article you linked, gardengal, on the mythology of Rose of Sharon. I have always wondered about the name. I don't grow it, but a neighbor has a lot of them. Decades ago I studied the religions of the ancient near east; I will save and study this more later.


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RE: Are Hibiscus Invasive

i doubt there is ever any harm in trying... the harm comes in forgetting about it.. for 2 or 3 years.. lol

errr.... that harm already came. Some of my hibiscus seeds are labelled 2007, but I am going to give them a try anyway.


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