Susan Martin is a lifelong Michigan gardener and director of marketing at Walters Gardens, Inc., Zeeland.

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Midnight Marvel Rose Mallow
by Susan Martin       #Flowers   #Plant Profile   #Red

Midnight Marvel rose mallow is best used as a focal point, adding a flashy splash of color to the garden late in the season, when many other plants are past their prime.

If you’re looking for something to liven up your tired landscape in the dog days of summer when many other plants are past their peak, try the new Midnight Marvel rose mallow(Hibiscus hybrid). This breathtaking beauty will be the highlight of your garden with its dramatic wine-purple foliage and huge 8-9-inch round, deep scarlet red blossoms, which burst open from shiny, near-black buds.

Unlike its tropical cousins, rose mallow is a hardy perennial that is in its prime from summer through fall, going dormant in winter. It emerges late in the spring, often in late May in Michigan, but grows very quickly to form a bushy, shrub-like clump. When shopping for rose mallow, look for indeterminate blooming cultivars, which have buds all the way up the stem. These usually bloom for about three months beginning in mid to late July.

Common Name: Midnight Marvel rose mallow or perennial hibiscus

Botanical Name: Hibiscus ‘Midnight Marvel’

Type of Plant: Hardy perennial in USDA Zones 4-9

Bloom Time: Midsummer into early fall

Flower Color: Scarlet red

Size: 4 feet tall by 4  feet wide

Exposure: Full sun to light shade

Watering: Prefers consistent moisture. Water regularly for best results.

Soil: Any well-drained soil

When to Fertilize: Early summer, if desired

When to Prune: Cut back the woody stems in spring before new growth appears.

In Your Landscape: Leave plenty of space for this large perennial to grow into a beautiful single specimen.

From Michigan Gardening Volume I Issue V. Photos courtesy of


Posted: 07/18/14   RSS | Print


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