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Hibiscus 'Red Flyer'
 
Hibiscus 'Red Flyer' | Hibiscus 'Red Flyer'Red Flyer Mallow

This is a sterile hybrid between two American natives: Hibiscus coccineus and Hibiscus grandiflorus. The cross produced a towering plant with large flowers. Heterosis is a term used in genetics (aka hybrid vigor). It refers to the increased strength of desireable characteristics in hybrids, and the the potential of obtaining genetically superior offspring by combining the best virtues of each parent —an apt description for 'Red Flyer'! This deciduous plant grows from basal canes up to 3.5m tall, and begins flowering in July continuing through frost.

Reference: When two plant species are crossed, the desirable qualities from each parent suppress the undesirable ones. This is called hybrid vigor, and plant breeders are always looking for new combinations to get it. Plant Delights Nursery in Raleigh, North Carolina, has introduced a new Texas star hybrid named Hibiscus 'Red Flyer.' It's a cross between H. coccineus and another native, Swamp Rosemallow (H. grandiflorus). 'Red Flyer' (H. coccineus x H. grandiflorus) has the Swamp Rose mallow's good trait for insect resistance while the showy foliage and flower form come from the Texas Star. 'Red Flyer' can reach 12 feet in height. It grows best in full sun, prefers moisture, and is a heavy feeder. Expect it to start blooming in mid-July, clear through until first frost. This plant will not self-seed because it is sterile. USDA Hardiness Zones 6-9. AHS Heat Zones 12-1 (estimated)

Some Like It Hot: Flowers That Thrive in Hot Humid Weather
By Pamela J. Gartin
Published by Gibbs Smith, 2007

 

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