Hibiscus schizopetalus

For those with a botanical bent, the University of California, Davis should be on the must-visit list. Fully exploring the arboretum and the conservatory can take the better part of day, and then there are numerous gateway gardens, art & science projects, a teaching greenhouse, and a densely-treed campus (with much cork oak) to investigate. I look forward to returning someday (though I’ve been told to avoid mid-summer because of the heat).

This fringed rosemallow or fringed hibiscus was growing in the Botanical Conservatory. Another common name for it is Japanese lantern, though that is based solely on the flower morphology and not its native distribution; this species is instead native to tropical eastern Africa. It is frequently grown as a container plant or indoor plant, and for those seeking advice to grow it, the University of Wisconsin Extension provides detailed care information: Hibiscus schizopetalus. Missouri Botanical Garden has an additional fact sheet: Hibiscus schizopetalus. Additional photographs of the species, including some images of the entire plant, are available via the Encyclopedia of Life.

Schizo- means “split” or “cleft”, so the epithet means “split-petaled”. Extending from the decorative petals is the fused staminode column, tipped by four divergent style branches. Birds are often the pollinators.

Hibiscus schizopetalus

7 responses to “Hibiscus schizopetalus”

  1. Bonnie

    Very pretty … and slightly creepy!

  2. Lynne

    One of my favorite flowers!

  3. David

    Stunning photos of Hibiscus..

  4. Elizabeth

    Wow- what an exceptionally ornate creature!!!

  5. Emily

    Wow! A kind of upside-down/inside-out Hibiscus. Love it!

  6. Jessica

    That is one craaaaaaaaazy-looking flower. Stunning and beautiful!

  7. Carl

    I have this plant and love it. It doesn’t flower that often but when it does it is stunning.

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