Hibiscus x 'BALTIMORE STAR'

Hibiscus x
Hibiscus x 'BALTIMORE STAR'
swamp mallow, hardy hibiscus
SIZE/TYPE mid-sized perennial
USUAL HEIGHT 0.8-1m
USUAL WIDTH 0.5-1m
LEAVES deciduous broadleaf
COLOUR OF LEAVES +multicoloured:green a burgundy red
FLOWERS showy
COLOUR OF FLOWERS deep red
BLOOMING TIME August - October
LOCATION full sun
USDA zone (lowest) 4   (down to -34°C)
WINTER PROTECTION  
FOR ZONE 5+6 Code of winter protection zone 5+6
FOR ZONE 7 Code of winter protection zone 7
BELONGS TO CATEGORIES Perennials
Summer blooms
Exotics
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Swamp mallow and its hybrids have been sought after plants for the past few years now. They are perennials with sturdy stems that have large, tropically looking flowers. Baltimore Star is a modern variety which did not arise from the original crossbreeding between h.moscheutos and h.coccineus. This variety is a cross between finished hybrids.

Baltimore Star has large flowers of amazing, deep red colour as in varieties Lord Baltimore and Fireball. However, Baltimore Star is earliest of all red-flowering hardy hibiscus known so far – you can spot first opened buds in late July. They continue blooming until the first really cold days of autumn. This variety produces attractive foliage, too. The leaves are 3-lobed, rich burgundy red when they emerge, keeping this shade until early summer, and just before the plant starts blooming they change to dark olive green with purple overlay. In late September they turn golden yellow, orange, and scarlet red before they fall down.

The plant is dependent on regular watering and feed supply. Use fertilizers with enough phosphorus for abundant flowering, or any other quick-release fertilizers where nitrogen is not predominant. Any fertilizing has to stop by end September. Still, nitrogen-based fertilizer is useful when the plants wakes up from dormancy in mid spring, but should not be used longer than 8 weeks. Hardy hibiscus emerges very late, sometimes as late as in late May.

For healthy growth and profuse flowering it needs a sunny location with a lot of moisture which can be achieved by good mulching. The soil has to be fertile and permeable, never let it dry out in summer. Hardy to about -29°C (USDA zone 5). Cut back the plant only a few centimetres above ground level in spring.

Last update 06-08-2012
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GLOSSARY
  • STANDARD QUALITY - Plants of this group are 1st class quality with number of branches and overall density adequate to their size and age, considering they were container grown.
  • DE LUXE QUALITY - This label guarantees a luxurious quality of manually selected plants that, compared to their height and age, are exceptionally dense and beautiful.
  • EXTRA - These plants are usually mature and bigger specimens with exceptional overall appearance.
  • STANDARD (as described in the plant form) means a tree with a trunk of 190-210 cm and a crown at the top, unless specified differently. The commercial size for trees is their girth measured in the height of 1m from ground.
  • HOBBY - These plants are of the same quality as our standard-quality plants but younger and therefore cheaper.
  • SHRUB - a woody plant with branches growing bushy from the ground level.
  • HALF-STANDARD or MINI-STANDARD - a small tree with shorter trunk, its size is usually specified.
  • FEATHERED - These are trees with branches growing already from the base of the trunk and up along the stem.
  • GRASSES and PERENNIALS - Sizes given usually read the diameter of the pot or the clump, as specified.
LARGE PLANTS over 150 cmspecimens, screening and hedging shrubs

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