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mallow, common name for members of the Malvaceae, a family of herbs and shrubs distributed over most of the world and especially abundant in the American tropics. Tropical species sometimes grow as small trees. The family is characterized by often mucilaginous sap and by showy, five-part flowers with a prominent column of fused stamens. The true mallows (genus Malva) are native to north temperate regions of the Old World, although many species have escaped from cultivation and become naturalized in the United States. North American species, sometimes cultivated and most common in the South and West, include the false mallows (genus Malvastrum) and the rose, or swamp, mallows (genus Hibiscus) found in marshy areas across the country. Introduced species of hibiscus include the rose of Sharon, or shrubby althea (H. syriacus), a popular ornamental bush or small tree native to Asia, and okra, or gumbo (H. esculentus), native to Africa, whose mucilaginous pods are used as a vegetable and in soups and stews. Alothea is an Old World genus. The hollyhock (A. rosea), the most popular ornamental of the family, is a Chinese perennial now widely naturalized and cultivated as a biennial or annual in many varieties of diverse colors. A. officinalis is the marsh mallow, a name sometimes used also for the larger-blossomed rose mallows. The root of the true marsh mallow, a native of Europe, has been used medicinally. It was formerly used for the confection marshmallow, which is now usually made from syrup, gelatin, and other ingredients. The tropical and subtropical flowering maple genus Abutilon, named for the maplelike foliage of some species, includes several house and bedding ornamentals. Some Asian species yield a fiber known as China jute—e.g., the velvetweed (A. theophrasti), called also Indian mallow and velvetleaf for the texture of its foliage. This plant, introduced to the United States as an ornamental, has become a noxious weed. Economically, the most important plant in the family is cotton (genus Gossypium), with species native to both the Old and New World and cultivated independently in both areas from early times. The mallow family is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Malvales.

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Beautiful showy flowers and seeds are edible. Makes super delicious popular tea with flowery vibrant tart cranberry-citrus flavor. Hibiscus is actually in the mallow family! Lowers blood pressure, sweetens tea without using sugar for diabetics. Some grind roots, leaves and flowers into paste with water and wash hair with it for hair loss and greying hair.
Edible Plant Guide © 2012 Markus Rothkranz
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a plant genus of the family Malvaceae (mallow family), consisting of evergreen or deciduous trees and shrubs and of perennial and annual grasses. There are about 250 species distributed primarily in tropical regions. They are less common in temperate regions. The leaves are mostly palmatilobate, and the flowers are usually large and brightly colored.

Many species of Hibiscus are ornamentals; they are cultivated in greenhouses, indoors, and on open ground. Of the woody species, the best known varieties are the China rose, or the Chinese hibiscus (H. rosa-sinensis), a long-flowering house plant, and the rose of Sharon (H. syriacus), which is cultivated extensively in the Crimea, the Caucasus, and Middle Asia. Of the herbaceous species, the best known are H, × hybridus, a perennial polyhybrid with large flowers, and the flower-of-an-hour (H. trionum), an annual plant with yellow flowers that is found in the southern USSR as a weed. Kenaf (H. cannabinus) is of great economic importance.


Derev’ia i kustarniki SSSR, vol. 4. Moscow-Leningrad, 1958.
Rusanov, F. N. Gibridnye gibiskusy. Tashkent, 1965.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


symbol of beauty. [Flower Symbolism: Flora Symbolica, 174]
See: Beauty


of Malaysia. [Flower Symbolism: WB, 7: 264]


of Hawaii. [Flower Symbolism: Golenpaul, 629]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


any plant of the chiefly tropical and subtropical malvaceous genus Hibiscus, esp H. rosa-sinensis, cultivated for its large brightly coloured flowers
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
My view is that if you're going to have a plant as hotblooded as a tropical hibiscus, you need to keep it under a tight optical rein.
Hibiscus also posted annual results yesterday, showing pre-tax profits of PS77.4m for the 12 months to June 30 - up by 60% from PS48.3m the year before.
According to studies keeping your intake of antioxidants up is a great way to prevent health issues, and hibiscus has the bonus of also containing loads of the well-known antioxidant vitamin C.
Anticonvulsive activity of Albizzia lebbeck Hibiscus rosa sinensis and Butea Monospera in experimental animals.
Materials: The dried cinnamon, clove and hibiscus were purchased from local supermarket in Adana, Turkey.
M.V New Confidence sailed out to sea on Friday morning, while three more ships Tempanos, BTG Fuji and Argent Hibiscus are expected to sail on same day in the afternoon.
Carol Doust, via email AI think it would be drastic and probably disastrous to cut a hibiscus back hard, particularly as it has been trained as a standard with a thick woody stem.
Hibiscus comes from the Malvaceae or mallow family, and poinsettias belong to the Euphorbiaceae family.
- Operatorship of the assets have been transferred from Shell to SEA Hibiscus.
Last Christmas, Sweet Sally Desserts (0917-7962731) created biscuits and cakes using a variety of Sekaya infusions: choco banana muffins with Sekaya's Hibiscus infusion, brownie walnuts bites with Sekaya's Green Earl Grey tea, mango cranberry oat cookies with Sekaya's Mango Summer tea and ginger snaps with Moroccan Mint Tea.
KARACHI -- Shipping activity remained active at the port where five ships, MS Tiger, Geneva, Ocean Phoenix, Argent Hibiscus and Corona scheduled to load/offload Containers, Rice, Coal, Phosphoric Acid and Palm oil were allotted berths at Qasim International Container Terminal, Multi-purpose Terminal, Pakistan International Bulk Terminal, Engro Vopak Terminal and Liquid Cargo Terminal respectively on Sunday.
BLOOD ORANGE AND SAGE MARGARITA Ingredients: 125ml blood orange juice, 2tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice, 1tbsp hibiscus syrup (see below), 3 sage leaves (reserve one to garnish), wedge of lime, Himalayan salt.