Gardening for wildlife

Hibiscus

Ms.Promila Chaturvedi is a freelance landscape designer whose organization "Gardens India" undertakes a number of projects in landscaping and gardening.

Hibiscus

These evergreen/deciduous herbs, shrubs, climbers, trees and perennials are grown for their showy flowers. They are hardy and can be grown in temperate and tropical climate equally well. They flourish in full sun and humus-rich, well drained soil. Tip prune young plants to make them bushy and plants are to be hard pruned after flowering season. Green/semi-ripe cutting and grafting propagate the shrubs and the trees. Division in spring multiplies perennials. The main enemies are white flies and aphids .

This genus has several varieties and hybrids. A large number of them are indigenous to India and also hybridized here. They are available as single flowering, semi-double and double flower varieties. There are tall, medium and dwarf varieties. They can successfully be grown in containers as well as in ground. They have longer flowering season so they need heavy doses of manure.

A well-rot farm-yard-manure/compost, bone-meal and neem-cake can take care of the plant. Though hundreds of new varieties come every year in the market, a few old ones are worth mentioning-

Old Indian Hybrids-

Agnes-- Cyclamen pink----large flower

Albus-- Pure white free bloomer

Chitra--- Orange-red

Lipstic-- Blood red

Rosa-sinensis -- Scarlet crimson

Schizopetalus -- Red streaked white (Japanese lantern-See picture above)

Some double varieties are—

Alipur Beauty -- Large reddish pink

Daffodil-- Large yellow

Mahatma-- Cadmium orange

Mutabilis alba - White

These plants are not only grown for their beautiful flowers but they are also grown for medicinal and food purpose.


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