I thought I'd post today about an old favorite in the garden, Altheas. I'm sure your grandmother had one in her garden or just down the road, but they are slowly disappearing in the new "landscape plan" books, and I think that is a shame. I have several in my garden and let me just say, I love mine. They bloom for every bit of 4 months and are bright beautiful color from a long distance away. So I thought I'd "dig up the dirt" on these plants........
Rose of Sharon, Shrub Althea, Hibiscus syriacus
5 - 8
Large flowers in late summer (flowers may be single or double; white, red, purple or pink).
Full sun to partial shade; moist, well-drained soil; tolerant of alkaline soils.
Numerous cultivars including:
'Ardens' - Double rosy purple flowers.
'Blue Bird' - Sky blue flowers with a small red center.
'Diana' - Pure white flowers.
'Jeanne d'Arc' - Double white or red flowers.
'Lucy' - Double red/ magenta pink flowers. (I have 2 of these and they are stunning!)
'Red Heart' - White flowers with red center. (I have two of these on opposite corners of the front of our house with the fairy landscape roses under them. They are first year plants and doing great. Picture from my garden last summer.)
Upright to slightly spreading
Here is some pictures I found on the web of Altheas used in the landscape....
Here is an espalier Rose of Sharon....wow, that would be stunning! And the branches are easily bent, so I think this would be an easy plant to try this with.
It also makes a great hedge planting.... Around here (Indiana) I can find them for about $5.00 for the shrub and $25.00 for the standards (or tree form). But you can also find starts in gardens because the older varieties set seed and you'll have plants to give away each spring. But I do not think they are a bothersome seeder. Just an added bonus! I love to find any "babies" I can in my garden...lol.
With the cost of most everything sky-high now a days I thought it would be nice to see some beautiful things we can add this year that won;t break the bank. You might even get one for free. Check your local county garden club, I'm sure they can help you out!