Hibiscus syriacus, a deciduous flowering shrub native to east Asia, is generally referred to in American English as "Rose of Sharon" and is considered the national flower of South Korea. The flower's name in Korean is Mugunghwa meaning 'immortal flower.' The first record of the Rose of Sharon grown in Korea is mentioned in an article produced 1,400 years ago.
Rose of Sharon bushes can get 8'-10' tall and have a spread of 4'-6'. Although naturally a multi-stemmed shrub, it can also be trained through pruning to have simply one main trunk; thus some people refer to it as Rose of Sharon "tree." Flowers are produced on new wood, so prune in early spring to shape and reduce size. Pruning the shrub back to 2 to 3 buds per branch in spring also encourages larger flowers. Blooms can be white, red, lavender or light blue; some have double blooms, all with a distinct ‘eye zone’. Rose of Sharon prefers full sun and well-drained soil but is somewhat tolerant of drought conditions. It is also an excellent plant for attracting hummingbirds.
Rose of Sharon will help bring a bit of tropical beauty to more temperate climates. The blooms that arrive later in the summer will help revive your garden after the flurry of spring flowers. It's attractive and plentiful blooms make the Rose of Sharon plant fully capable of holding its own as a specimen or serving as a late flowering hedge around your pool or patio.