I was mesmerized by Hibiscus Flowers in St. Croix US Virgin Islands. It was my first time to see such lovely hybrid gumamela flowers. In the Philippines, I rarely notice large and double petals so seeing it with my two eyes was a treat for me.
I like Gumamela, its not obvious my blog name is Gumamela sa Paraiso. Many people were keep asking me why used the pet name gumamela, I guess using it as my alias has something to do with my personality and character. Gumamela survives well even if you don’t give so much care and attention. Just like my personality, I am independent and strong.
The tropical hibiscus belongs to the Malvaceae or mallow family. Other relatives are the rose-of-sharon (shrubby althea), the hardy hibiscus grown in the north, okra, cotton, the Confederate Rose, hollyhock and quite a few others.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 temperate, subtropical 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.
In the Philippines, the gumamela (local name for hibiscus) is used by children as part of a bubble-making pastime. The flowers and leaves are crushed until the sticky juices come out. Hollow papaya stalks are then dipped into this and used as straws for blowing bubbles. Together with soap, hibiscus juices produce more bubbles.
Hibiscus is a very hardy, versatile plant and in tropical conditions it can enhance the beauty of any garden. Being versatile it adapts itself easily to balcony gardens in crammed urban spaces and can be easily grown in pots as a creeper or even in hanging pots. It is a perennial and flowers through the year. As it comes in a variety of colors, it’s a plant which can add vibrancy to any garden.
The ancestors of today’s modern hibiscus hybrids were sprinkled all around the globe, following the Equator from one warm, tropical land to the next. The eight hibiscus species that are considered to be the ancestors of the modern exotic hibiscus were originally native to Mauritius, Madagascar, Fiji, Hawaii, and either China or India. The various species of hibiscus are popular for ornamental, medicinal, and culinary purposes, as well as used in spiritual traditions.