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Giant Red Turk's Cap

Malvaviscus arboreus var. penduliflorus

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Giant Red Turk's Cap (Malvaviscus arboreus var. penduliflorus) at Roger's Gardens

Giant Red Turk's Cap flowers

Giant Red Turk's Cap flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Giant Red Turk's Cap (Malvaviscus arboreus var. penduliflorus) at Roger's Gardens

Giant Red Turk's Cap flowers

Giant Red Turk's Cap flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Giant Red Turk's Cap (Malvaviscus arboreus var. penduliflorus) at Roger's Gardens

Giant Red Turk's Cap in bloom

Giant Red Turk's Cap in bloom

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  8 feet

Spread:  6 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  9a

Other Names:  Sleepy Hibiscus, Mexican Turk's Cap

Description:

An interesting, freely branching shrub with irregularly lobed, green leaves, producing brilliant red, nodding flowers for most of the year; will tolerate light frost; prune to maintain size and density if desired; makes a great hedge

Ornamental Features

Giant Red Turk's Cap features showy nodding cherry red tubular flowers at the ends of the branches from late winter to late fall. The fruits are showy red drupes carried in abundance from late fall to mid winter. It has green foliage with grayish green undersides. The lobed palmate leaves remain green throughout the winter.

Landscape Attributes

Giant Red Turk's Cap is a multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its relatively coarse texture can be used to stand it apart from other landscape plants with finer foliage.

This is a relatively low maintenance shrub, and should be cut back in late fall in preparation for winter. It is a good choice for attracting bees, butterflies and hummingbirds to your yard. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Giant Red Turk's Cap is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Mass Planting
  • Hedges/Screening
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Giant Red Turk's Cap will grow to be about 8 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 6 feet. It has a low canopy, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 30 years.

This shrub should only be grown in full sunlight. It prefers to grow in average to moist conditions, and shouldn't be allowed to dry out. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This species is not originally from North America.

Giant Red Turk's Cap makes a fine choice for the outdoor landscape, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when grown in a container, it may not perform exactly as indicated on the tag - this is to be expected. Also note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Characteristics
Massing  Screening  Garden  Container 
Applications
Flowers  Fruit  Texture  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features