Mention hibiscus, and I once only pictured a showy red flower in a tropical vacation destination.
However, variations of the large flower can be found in other hot climates. Indeed, there are varieties that are native to Texas.
In my neighborhood of East Dallas, these hibiscuses tend to be of the swamp variety. Many pop up along the shoreline of White Rock Lake.
In the late summer to early fall, hibiscus flowers bloom along the shore. I spotted these particular blooms along the Sunset Bay area of the lake.
Both pink and white varieties of the flowers bloom at the lake. These are likely all variants of a hibiscus with the scientific name Hibiscus lasiocarpos.
According to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, other common names for this particular variety include Woolly Rose-mallow, Woolly Mallow, Rose-mallow, and False Cotton.
I was bird watching on a dock near the bay when I came across white hibiscus flowers blooming one morning along the wetland shores.
This perennial hibiscus plant typically grows three to five feet tall with triangle or heart shaped leaves. The flowers are most commonly white and sometimes pink, but distinctive for their crimson red centers.
I spotted these flowers in bloom in the morning. They close up by the evening. So the best time to see the flowers is on your morning walk, not a sunset stroll (as I have learned from experience).
Pale pink hibiscus flowers, likely of the same variety, also hang low over the Sunset Bay area of the lake.
The top blooming months for the flowers are April through September, and I first noticed them at peak bloom in late summer. However, I still spotted flowers in early October.
These flowers are native to Texas but also are spotted in neighboring states such as Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas, among other states.
So the lesson is – you can spot hibiscus flowers at your local Texas lake!
- “Swamp Hibiscus in the Wetland Marshes of Trinity River Bottom,” Dallas Trinity Trails
- “New Texas-bred blue hibiscus flowers arrive in stores this weekend,” The Dallas Morning News
- “This blooming tropical shrub will bring glory to your Texas summer garden,” The Dallas Morning News
- Hibiscus Lasiocarpos, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center Plant Database