Many gardens lose their color once the summer heat kicks in. Choosing hardy bloomers that can handle the heat and full sun will keep your green spaces looking bright and beautiful. The Rose of Sharon, native to India and eastern Asia, not only thrives during the hottest months of the year, but it also holds up to frigid winters, air pollution, and humid conditions. Its exotic, long-lasting blooms and vibrant green foliage flourish year after year without a lot of fuss.

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1. Rose of Sharon isn’t a rose

Surprisingly, Rose of Sharon, or Hibiscus syriacus, is not a rose. But it is related to hibiscus, cotton, and okra and a member of the Mallow family. This deciduous shrub grows upright, reaching heights of eight to 12 feet with a spread of up to 10 feet. The plant usually has multiple trunks. Its thin, silky, trumpet-shaped flowers appear on the current year’s growth and can reach up to four inches across. Choose from white, pink, red, violet, or purple blooms. These flowers open in sunlight and close in the dark. In October, the blooms fade and develop into seed pods, which become a source of food for a variety of birds.

mallow rose of sharon _curly_ / Getty Images
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