Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Confederate Rose Mallow
Hibiscus mutabilis 'Rubrus'

Family: Malvaceae (mal-VAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Hibiscus (hi-BIS-kus) (Info)
Species: mutabilis (mew-TAB-ill-iss) (Info)
Cultivar: Rubrus

» View all varieties of Hibiscus

4 vendors have this plant for sale.

8 members have or want this plant for trade.


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
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)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

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2 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Dodsky On Aug 21, 2009, Dodsky from Smiths Grove, KY (Zone 6b) wrote:

I've had this plant for five years, bought originally from Lowe's. It is quite a showy plant with large, medium green leaves, multiple tall stalks reaching 10-12' high, and from mid-summer through frost it has lots of beautiful, vibrant fucshia blooms that are easily 5-7" in diameter with bright yellow/gold stamens and pistil in the center. The flowers have that typical, pretty "hibiscus look" to them.

The plant is root hardy in my zone (6b) and reliably comes back bigger and stronger each year. I have it planted on the south side of my house where it gets blasted by the full sun all day. The soil in that bed is red clay amended with some organic materials, it's still quite heavy. I'm sure the plant will perform even better under improved growing conditions. The plant can tolerate dry conditions but flowers more profusely and looks better overall if watered occasionally during the drier years and/or hottest part of the summer. My plant has never set any seed, but propagates easily from cuttings.

If you have the room for a plant this size and you like lush foliage and tropical flowers, I'd definitely recommend you give this one a try. The only pests I've encounterd with this plant are occasionally white flies during the hottest/drier summers and some type of caterpillar/sawfly larva(?) that are easily washed off with a blast of water. Japanese beetles have occasionally nibbled some of the leaves and flowers but generally leave it alone. I have grown some of the lighter white/pink H. mutabilis from seed this year and am eager to see how the two types compare.

Positive dhaney On Jul 10, 2008, dhaney from Whitehouse, TX wrote:

My friend saw this bush...she cut some finger-thick brances off and put them in a pail of water....when they sprouted roots we put them in potting soil in pots....they have done well...the ones I put in the ground are approx 4 ft tall....I have seen two others at different places that were 15-20 ft tall and beautiful when covered with pink blooms...too bad it is in October and not in the spring....can be cut back drastically....very large leaves with several points....would not make a good privacy screen as they lose their leaves in the winter but make a great shade screen for my outbuilding in the Texas summer


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

Anniston, Alabama
Huntsville, Alabama
Citrus Heights, California
Bushnell, Florida
Fernandina Beach, Florida
Inverness, Florida
Navarre, Florida
Ocala, Florida
Satsuma, Florida
Marietta, Georgia
Smiths Grove, Kentucky
Norco, Louisiana
Gwinn, Michigan
Madison, Mississippi
Kure Beach, North Carolina
Rowland, North Carolina
Waxhaw, North Carolina
Wilmington, North Carolina
Wilson, North Carolina
Bluffton, South Carolina (2 reports)
Clemson, South Carolina
Conway, South Carolina
Broaddus, Texas
Colmesneil, Texas
Houston, Texas
Irving, Texas
New Caney, Texas
Orange, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
Spring Branch, Texas
Whitehouse, Texas
Winnsboro, Texas

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