Plant of the Week: Sugar Tip® Gold Hibiscus


Last week was a whirlwind at MANTS in Baltimore! I met so many great people, from the GWA reception on Wednesday evening, to the MANTS media reception Thursday morning, and throughout the week at the booth.

I'll need some time to gather my thoughts, but I have lots of inspiration to share in the weeks to come. In the meantime, check out my newest article in the GardenSmart e-news about deer-resistant evergreens and of course, Jane's Plant of the Week, below.

Have a wonderful week!


Zero calorie sweetness

That's Sugar Tip® Gold Hibiscus. Like the original Sugar Tip®, Sugar Tip® Gold Hibiscus is a handsome variegated rose of Sharon with showy sterile flowers. If you've ever dug up unwanted seedlings from your yard, you know how important this is.

Sugar Tip® Gold has bright golden variegation rather than the white coloration of the original, and has lavender-purple flowers instead of pink. It's a nice new color option for anyone wanting an easy to grow plant with season-long interest.

Sugar Tip® Hibiscus is one of those plants that challenges a lot of preconceived notions. First, it blooms.

Sugar Tip® Gold
This may not seem like a big deal for, you know, a flowering shrub, but if you've ever grown the older Hibiscus syriacus 'Variegata' you know how frustrating a non-blooming plant can be. That selection would tease gardeners with plenty of buds, but they would all abcise before opening. Imagine your favorite football team making it to the red zone on every possession but never scoring. Yes, that's what that plant did for gardeners - it made them sympathize with Detroit Lions fans.

Not only does Sugar Tip® bloom, but it does it without causing any problems, i.e. unwanted
seedlings. We're quite proud of the array of non-invasive plants in the Proven Winners® brand, and Sugar Tip® was one of the first sterile varieties that we introduced. Since then we've introduced Sugar Tip® Gold, Azurri Blue Satin®, Orchid Satin®, and Purple Satin® Hibiscus, all of which are seedless.

Sugar Tip® Gold Hibiscus grows 4-5' tall and is hardy to USDA Zone 5. You will want to grow it in full sun. As with many variegated plants, you may find that it's a little slower growing than non-variegated selections. That's OK: both of the Sugar Tip® Hibiscus have nice, consistent habits that make for a very attractive container plant.

Plant of the Week is written by Jane Beggs-Joles

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