Hibiscus FAQ

What is Hibiscus?

Hibiscus is a genus of flowering plants in the mallow family, Malvaceae The genus is quite large, comprising several hundred species that are native to warm temperature, suptropical and tropical regions throughout the world. Member species are renowned for their large, showy flowers and those species are commonly known simply as “hibiscus”, or less widely known as rose mallow.

Where is our Hibiscus from?

Our Hibiscus is a product of Nigeria.

What’s the history of Hibiscus?

The red hibiscus is the flower of the Hindu goddess Kai, and appears frequently in depictions of her in the art of Bengal, India, often with the goddess and the flower merging in form. The hibiscus is used as an offering to goddess Kali and Lord Ganesha in Hindu worship.

The hibiscus is a national symbol of Haiti, and the national flower of nations including the Solomon Islands and Niue. Hibiscus syriacus is the national flower of South Korea, and Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is the national flower of Malaysia. Hibiscus brackenridgei is the state flower of Hawaii.

What does Hibiscus look like?

Our hibiscus flowers come from the Roselle plant, native to India and Malaysia, where it is commonly cultivated. It has been successfully established throughout the Tropics and Subtropics of both hemispheres, and in many areas of the Caribbean and Central America. It is an annual, woody, shrub growing to a height of 2–2.5 metres. The leaves are deeply lobed, smooth and mid-green in colour, 8–15 cm in length. The flowers are 8–10 cm in diameter, white to pale yellow in colour with a dark red spot at the base of each petal, they have a stout fleshy calyx at the base of the flower.

How would you describe the flavour and odour of Hibiscus?

Hibiscus has a sour, sharp, tart taste similar to cranberries.

What are alternative names for Hibiscus?

Hibiscus is also known as Roselle, Rosella, Kharkady, Karkadé, Karkadi, Karkadeh, Carcade, Flor de Jamaica, Lumanda, Jamaican Sorrel, Tengamora, Bissap Rouge, Rozelle, Rose of Sharon, Tropical Hibiscus and Hardy Hibiscus.

What is the suggested use of Hibiscus?

The dried flowers can be used to add flavour and natural colour to herbal teas; they can also be turned into syrup, jam, jelly and alcoholic beverages. The petals can be used to obtain a yellow dye.

About the Author

Georgia

As an animal lover and baking enthusiast, Georgia can often be found experimenting with plant-based recipes in her kitchen.

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