Hardy hibiscus (Hibiscus moscheutos) are herbaceous perennial plants belonging to the Malvaceae family. Most hardy hibiscus varieties are winter hardy in USDA zones 5 to 9. Each hardy hibiscus flower blooms for just a single day, but the flowers on a plant typically bloom in succession from July through September. Hardy hibiscus has many varieties.
The 100 Degrees hardy hibiscus variety is a shrubby plant that generally reaches 3 to 4 feet in height with spreads ranging from 2 to 3 feet. This variety blooms flowers with light pink petals, red eyes and a pale yellow center column. The flowers can grow to 9 inches in diameter. The 100 Degrees hibiscus has dark green, oval leaves and grows well when planted along ponds or streams.
Candy Stripe is one of the taller hardy hibiscus varieties, reaching 4 to 5 feet in height and 3 to 4 feet wide. The Candy Stripe flowers have white petals with red veins. These blooms range from 5 to 9 inches in diameter. The dark green leaves have a red tint. This hardy hibiscus variety works well as a tall hedge or temporary privacy screen.
The Luna Red variety is one of the few hardy hibiscus plants that can be successfully grown from seed. This sturdy plant is a smaller variety, reaching only 2 to 3 feet in height and 1 1/2 to 2 feet wide. The dark burgundy-red flowers feature showy white to light yellow center columns. These flowers have diameters ranging from 7 to 8 inches. Luna Red hardy hibiscus plants are small enough to plant in containers. They also work well planted in masses or groups to fill low spots in the garden.
Plum Crazy hibiscus plants feature purple-green foliage and large purple flowers. This variety generally reaches 3 to 4 feet in height and 2 to 4 feet wide. The 7- to 8-inch flowers have plum purple petals, deep purple eyes and light yellow center columns. The Plum Crazy hardy hibiscus grows well as borders, landscape accents and temporary hedges. This is one of the few varieties of hardy hibiscus winter hardy in USDA zone 4.
Lord Baltimore is an erect hardy hibiscus variety that features red-brown stems and medium green leaves. These plants grow 4 to 5 feet in height with spreads ranging from 2 to 3 feet. The ruffled, crimson red petals overlap one another. Lord Baltimore grows well along natural water bodies, such as ponds or streams.
Turn of the Century
The Turn of the Century is a very tall hardy hibiscus variety that reaches 6 to 8 feet in height with spreads ranging 4 to 5 feet. The bicolor flowers feature petals that are pink-red on one side and pale pink on the other. These flowers have showy, light yellow center columns and red eyes. Turn of the Century hardy hibiscus plants work well as hedges, temporary privacy screens and border rears.