Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Tropical Hibiscus
Hibiscus rosa-sinensis 'Brilliant'

Family: Malvaceae (mal-VAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Hibiscus (hi-BIS-kus) (Info)
Species: rosa-sinensis (RO-sa-sy-NEN-sis) (Info)
Cultivar: Brilliant
Additional cultivar information: (aka Brilliant Red)

» View all varieties of Hibiscus

4 members have or want this plant for trade.

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)
8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Blooms all year


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
This plant is suitable for growing indoors
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Provides winter interest
Suitable for growing in containers

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From woody stem cuttings
From softwood cuttings
From semi-hardwood cuttings
From hardwood cuttings
By grafting
By air layering

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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By PotEmUp
Thumbnail #1 of Hibiscus rosa-sinensis by PotEmUp

By RichSwanner
Thumbnail #2 of Hibiscus rosa-sinensis by RichSwanner

By RichSwanner
Thumbnail #3 of Hibiscus rosa-sinensis by RichSwanner

By RichSwanner
Thumbnail #4 of Hibiscus rosa-sinensis by RichSwanner

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Thumbnail #5 of Hibiscus rosa-sinensis by MacSuibhne

By Jode
Thumbnail #6 of Hibiscus rosa-sinensis by Jode

By Jode
Thumbnail #7 of Hibiscus rosa-sinensis by Jode

There are a total of 21 photos.
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5 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive vossner On Apr 20, 2013, vossner from Richmond, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I had given up ENTIRELY on tropical hibiscus as they never survived our (mild) 9a winters. However, I noticed that 2-3 or my neighbors grew this red beauty that seemed to survive winters w/o protection. After doing a little research I learned the plant that renewed my faith in tropical hibiscus was Brilliant. This plant can grow to 10 ft. I plan to keep it much shorter as it takes pruning quite well. Thirsty plant!. Plant in full sun for continued flowering spring thru fall.

Here is an excerpt taken from the history section of Hidden Valley Hibiscus:

The common red single flowered hibiscus, called Brilliant in the USA, is probably the best known hibiscus in the world. Nobody knows where it came from or when it was hybridized. It seems likely that the single red species on Mauritius, known as Hibiscus fragilis, was either a parent or an ancestor of Brilliant

Positive Beach_Barbie On Jan 1, 2008, Beach_Barbie from Kure Beach, NC (Zone 9a) wrote:

This is one of the hardiest hibsicus cultivars. I've had it in the ground for over a year and with mulching last year, it's doing just fine.
As long as it's hardy in a location, I think that they're much happier in the ground than in pots.

Positive Jode On Jul 23, 2007, Jode from Rowlett, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Notes from the grower: Enjoy indoors or outdoors as patio plotted plants. Not hardy outdoors when temps drop below 55F. LIGHT: Sunny or bright light. WATER: Do not let plants wilt. Keep soil moist at all times. FERTILIZER: According to directions, use full strength 5-10-5 houseplant fertilizer monthly from Mar.-Nov. An occasional feeding Dec.-Feb. PRUNING: Prune in the spring if desired to maintain shape.

Positive AmandaTaylor7 On Jul 17, 2007, AmandaTaylor7 from Alvin, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

This is a GOGEOUS, HARDY plant!! Contrary to popular belief that hibiscus must be in full 100% all-day sun to thrive, these do better in just a tad bit of shade per day.

We had a large frost this past winter and all the leaves on my Brilliant Hibiscus plants yellowed and dropped off. 2 weeks later, new ones began forming all over the shrub. I then cut it to about 1/2 it's size (about 2 feet at the time) and now, 4 months later, it's back to 4 feet again! This is a great shrub! Beautiful blooms!

Positive RichSwanner On Apr 2, 2004, RichSwanner from Citrus Heights, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

I don,t think this plant will go below 32f. It doesn't matter, it is a great annual. They can be gotten at any HD Lowe's or any good nursery. They come around here in March and last untill the first frost. That can be 10 months. The whole idea is that at 5$ it's a sweet color spot. Giving that Hawaii, or tropics feel to your yard or pool area. When I see them off my patio I think Maui!


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Maricopa, Arizona
Citrus Heights, California
Fallbrook, California
Indio, California
Oakdale, California
San Leandro, California
West Palm Beach, Florida
Kurtistown, Hawaii
Kure Beach, North Carolina
Alvin, Texas
Austin, Texas
Richmond, Texas
San Antonio, Texas

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