Common names: Texas Star Hibiscus
Botanical names: Hibiscus coccineus
This slender, multi-branched native perennial plant is an excellent choice for gardeners wanting to attract butterflies and hummingbirds. It likes wet areas and is perfect for streams, bogs and rain gardens and in ponds. It is a good choice to plant in the back or in the center of beds and let its dramatic blooms peek from behind.
Size: 4 to 7 feet tall and 2 to 3 feet wide
Flowers: crimson red or white “Alba” star shaped blooms up to 3 to 4 inches
Bloom time: June to October
Leaves: palmate, star-shaped and serrated; often mistaken for marijuana
Pests and Disease Problems: grasshoppers
Growing in North Texas
‘Texas Star’ can be planted in many soils, but they prefer a moist well drained soil. They bloom best in full sun and when watered consistently. They can even be grown within a backyard pond. The plants die down to the ground during winter, but return with sprouts in late spring. They grow very rapidly and do not require much care. To shape, lightly prune any leggy stalks in spring. Lightly mulch plants not in a pond in winter. Propagate by seed sown ¼ inch deep in early spring; if kept moist it will produce a plant which will bloom the first year. You can divide the clump in late winter and plant 2 to 3 feet apart with crowns 3 to 4 inches beneath the soil.
The Southern Gardener; “Hardy Hibiscus”; Dr. William C. Welch
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center; The University of Texas at Austin
Keywords (tags): tall accent; specimen; native; pond; bog; rain garden; nectar