Sunday, May 28, 2006

Sevvarathai - Hibiscus is the name of a group of plants that belong to the mallow family. Hibiscus rosa-sinensis (Hibiscus Shoe Flower) originated from East Asia. The flowers are large, red, firm but scentless. The five-petaled hibiscus flowers have distinct protruding stamen tubes and pistil tips. The petals come in six basic colours that are deeply saturated: white, red, yellow, orange, lavender and brown. But many colour variations are available among the 1,000 hibiscus varieties. Hibiscus flowers are characterised as either single or double form with variations in petal number and arrangement. Single hibiscus always have five petals, while the double form has more than five petals. They are propagated by cuttings and budgrafting. Among the types cultivated in gardens are the Rose of Sharon, a tall, late-flowering shrub. This flower which can stand 8 to 10 feet tall are very attractive to hummingbirds and butterflies. [ScienceNet-Singapore]