Rose of Sharon is a vigorous deciduous flowering shrub growing 8-10’ tall and is a member of the mallow family, Malvaceae ,that also includes okra, cotton, coffee, and hollyhock. It is native to Asia from India to China but introduced into the American colonies by the 18th century. The medium to dark green leaves are two to four inches long and have three lobes with coarsely toothed margins and palmate veining. Plants are late to leaf out in the spring and late to fall in autumn. The showy hollyhock-like flowers bloom singly from late summer to early fall and are two to four inches across. Those of the species are pink with a red eye but cultivars are available in white, magenta, violet, blue, and combinations and may be double. Each flower has a conspicuous staminal column in the center.
Meaning in the Language of Flowers: Consumed by love
My heart’s on flame, and does like fire to her aspire. Cowley
His love was passion’s essence-as a tree
On fire by lightning: with ethereal flame
Kindled he was…Byron
Love was to his impassioned soul,
Not, as with others, a mere part
Of his existence, but the whole,
The very life-breath of his heart…Moore
What must love be in a heart
All passion’s fiery depths concealing,
Which has in its minuest part
More than another’s whole of feeling? L. E. L.
Violent fires soon burn out themselves…Shks.
The more thou damn’st it up, the more it burns;
The current, hat with gentle murmur glides,
Thou know’st being stopp’d, impatiently doth rage;
But when his fair course is not hindered,
He makes sweet music with th’enamelled stones. Id.
Those edges soonest turn that are most keen,
A sober moderation stands sure,
No violent extremes endure… Aleyn
For more information go to:
The Language of Flowers: Introduction