Rose of Sharon
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Rose of Sharon
ative Photo: Tabish
Common name: Althaea, Rose of Sharon
Botanical name: Hibiscus syriacus    Family: Malvaceae (Mallow family)

Rose of Sharon isn't a rose, but its large, flat blossoms and nectar attract hummingbirds and tiny insects. Native to China and India, they have been cultivated as long as records exist. The Chinese used the flowers and leaves for food. Thomas Jefferson grew them from seed, and was documented to have planted them at all three of his homes. The flowers on this woody shrub come in several colors, including white, pink, purple, and red. Its leaves don't come out until late in spring, causing false everal kinds have dark-colored centers in the flowers, and single-flowering types are quite common. Seedlings often sprout in nearby areas. Propagation from cuttings is usually preferred, because unlike seedlings, rooted cuttings will be exactly like their parents.
Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Manipur
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