Hibiscus sabdariffa

Hibiscus sabdariffa

Common name: Rosella

I grow best: In summer, plant grows 2m high
• Attracts birds, native bees and invertebrate creators
• Flowers spring, summer, edible fruit
• Fertile well drained soils
• Cultural uses
• Tropical plant

Looks like:  Rosella is a hardy plant, adapted to a range of Australian climates. It can survive dry spells, but for best results, plant in fertile, well-drained soil and water regularly. A tropical plant, Rosella is frost sensitive and grows as an annual in regions with cold winters. In this case, leave a few calyxes unharvested before Winter, then save the seeds for a future planting. This plant can reach up to heights of 2m in a very short period, though it also grows comfortably in a vegetable bed or a large pot.

Habitat & Distribution: In the wild, you can find this edible hibiscus growing in the forest, rainforest and sand dune regions of our tropical north. Soak seeds overnight, sow on top of seed raising mix and lightly cover to about the thickness of the seed. Keep moist until germination. When transplanting to a bigger pot, light seasol and water once a day. Once more established, pot up to a larger pot or plant in the ground. Repeat the process of seasol and water once a day until established. If planting in the ground, water once a day for the first week and once established, water every 2-3 days. Rosella can be kept in full sun and will grow up to 2 metres in height and 1 metre wide.  Rosella flowers in Autumn with fruit appearing not long after. 

Eco Friendly Seed Starting Kit: Propagation Instructions
1.Soak Rosella seed overnight in water.
2.Once ready to sow the seed, place coir tablet in a container with warm water.
3.Once the coir tablet has expanded, pour excess water out of the container and transfer the coir into the peat pot.
4.Place seeds in pot and cover lightly with the coir.
5.Keep in a sheltered position where it can receive morning sun, gradually exposing to full sun.
6.Keep moist until germination.
7.Once seed is germinated, you can plant in next size pot or plant in your garden.
8.Ensure pot is under soil level, push down gently and water well.

Traditional uses: Rosella fruit and leaves are rich in Vitamin C, Anti-Inflammatory and Antibacterial Properties, Aids Digestion, Weight Loss, Antidepressant Properties, Anti-Cancer Properties, Cough, Colds and Fever Management, Blood Pressure Management, Provides relief from cramps and menstrual pain. They have a pleasant tart-sweet flavour that goes well in salads, jellies, red sauces, jams, cordials, syrups, fruit teas and wine. The seeds may be roasted and ground into flour. The young leaves may be steamed or stir-fried – these are also known as red sorrel.