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Genus: Hibiscus

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Rosids > Eurosid II > Order: Malvales > Family: Malvaceae

About 300 species worldwide, occurring mainly in the tropics and subtropics. Sixty-one species are native to southern Africa, four species are naturalised, and an additional nine species are cultivated in the region.

Species native to southern Africa

List from Plants of Southern Africa - an Online Checklist (SANBI), Flora of Zimbabwe and Flora of Mozambique.

Hibiscus aethiopicus

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus allenii

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus altissimus

 

Hibiscus aridus

 

Hibiscus articulatus

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus barbosae

 

Hibiscus barnardii

 

Hibiscus burt-davyi

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus caesius

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus calyphyllus

 

Hibiscus cannabinus (Kenaf, Deccan hemp, Bimlipatum jute)

Native to the Old World tropics. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus castroi

 

Hibiscus coddii

 

Hibiscus dinteri

 

Hibiscus discophorus

 

Hibiscus diversifolius (Swamp hibiscus)

Native to tropical Africa and Asia. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus dongolensis

 

Hibiscus elliottiae

 

Hibiscus engleri

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus fleckii

 

Hibiscus fuscus

 

Hibiscus gwandensis

Recorded from Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus kirkii

 

Hibiscus lobatus

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus ludwigii

 

Hibiscus lunarifolius

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus marlothianus

 

Hibiscus mastersianus

Recorded from Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus mechowii

 

Hibiscus merxmuelleri

 

Hibiscus meyeri

 

Hibiscus micranthus

 

Hibiscus microcarpus

[= Hibiscus malacospermus]

 

Hibiscus migeodii

Recorded from Mozambique.

 

Hibiscus mutatus

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus nigricaulis

[= Hibiscus meeusei]

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus okavangensis

 

Hibiscus ovalifolius

Recorded from Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus palmatus

 

Hibiscus panduriformis

Recorded from Zimbabwe and Mozambique. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus pedunculatus

 

Hibiscus physaloides

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus platycalyx

 

Hibiscus praeteritus

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus pusillus

Hibiscus pusillus

Hibiscus rhabdotospermus

 

Hibiscus rhodanthus

Recorded from Zimbabwe. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus rupicola

Recorded from Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus sabiensis

 

Hibiscus saxatilis

 

Hibiscus schinzii

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus seineri

Recorded from Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus shirensis

Recorded from Zimbabwe and Mozambique. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus sidiformis

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus subreniformis

 

Hibiscus sulfuranthus

 

Hibiscus surattensis

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Hibiscus tiliaceus (Wild cotton tree)

 

Hibiscus upingtoniae

 

Hibiscus vitifolius

 

Hibiscus waterbergensis

 

Species naturalised in southern Africa

List from Plants of Southern Africa - an Online Checklist (SANBI).

Hibiscus mutabilis (Tree hollyhock)

Native to China.

 

Hibiscus sabdariffa (Roselle, Jamaica sorrel)

Native to the Old World tropics.

 

Hibiscus syriaca (Rose-of-Sharon)

Native to the Old World tropics.

 

Hibiscus trionum (Bladder ketmia)

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

Other species, cultivated in southern Africa

List from Glen (2002).

Hibiscus acetosella

Native to tropical Africa.

 

Hibiscus esculentus (Okra, Gombo, Gumbo, Bindi, Lady's Fingers)

The young fruit are eaten as a vegetable. They are very mucilaginous which gives soups and caseroles a thick consistency. Okra is tropical in origin but there is uncertainty whether it was domesticated in Africa or India. 

 

Hibiscus greenwayi

Native to Tanzania.

 

Hibiscus huegelii

Native to Australia.

 

Hibiscus kitaibelifolius

Native to Brazil.

 

Hibiscus militaris

Native to the USA.

 

Hibiscus moscheutos

 

 

Hibiscus rosa-sinensis (Hibiscus, Chinese Cotton Rose)

The most commonly grown species of Hibiscus in South African gardens, coming in a variety of colours (mainly pink, red and white).

Hibiscus rosa-sinensis (Hibiscus, Chinese Cotton Rose)

Hibiscus schizopetalus

Native to tropical Africa.

 

 Herbivores in southern Africa

Lophostethus dumolinii (Arrow Sphinx Hawkmoth)

Caterpillars recorded eating the leaves of Hibiscus micranthus, Hibiscus panduriformis and Hibiscus tiliaceus

Lepidoptera: Sphingidae (hawkmoths)

 

Publications

  • Glen, H.F. 2002. Cultivated Plants of Southern Africa. Jacana, Johannesburg.

  

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