July is prime Hibiscus blooming season, and the past week it's really been revving up around here! As most of you know by this point, I'm a fanatic about Hibiscus and most members of the Mallow family ... examples of which you've seen in various posts recently.
Hibiscus moscheutos, sometimes referred to as 'Rose Mallow' is the species that definitely packs the most "Wow!" factor, with its dinner plate sized blooms in eye-popping shades of red, pink, white and combinations thereof. Though the eventual plant height may vary by cultivar (the Blue River white one I posted recently has been known to top out at about 7 feet!), most species tend to grow from at least 4 feet to 6 feet at maturity.
The 'Disco Belle' variety shown here is one of the smaller cultivars and usually tops out at a very bushy four feet, which makes it an attractive option for closer to the front of the border. Though its blooms don't quite reach dinner plate size (usually about 7-8"), they're every bit as striking, and what it may lack in size, it more than makes up for it in sheer quantity! On a given day, I've seen as many as 10-12 blooms open, and this past weekend it was really outstanding with approximately 6-8 blooms opening every day. As I've mentioned before, their blooms only last one day, so every day it blooms it's essentially a whole new show!
Notes on the photos: Taken 22 July, 2007 by IVG.
The first shot gives you some perspective of where this beauty is situated in the front boulder bed. In the background you can see it surrounded by Zebrina Mallow, Artemisia, Coneflowers, Sea Holly, and Porcupine grass.
The second shot is an in your face close up of one of the blooms, complete with lovely IBs. And finally, the third shot is a kind of 'peekaboo' shot I took just for fun, to try to get the perspective of the bloom rising up from the background.