Hibiscus sabdariffa (Roselle) [12 Seeds]


Germination Information: To give the seeds an early start, sow them indoors, about 1/4″ deep, in a warm, bright spot in late winter to early spring. A heat mat is a real plus for getting quick germination. (I started mine on March 3 and the started sprouting on March 9; your experience may vary.) Wait until all danger of frost has passed before setting out the seedlings.

Note that this information will not appear on the seed packet you receive.

Please read the description as well before ordering.

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As a fan of hibiscus tea, I have long been tempted to try to grow roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa), but I had an idea that it wouldn’t perform well here in Pennsylvania—that it might not have time to produce its colorful and flavorful calyces before frost. I’m glad I finally tried it, because it turned out to be beautiful plant in the garden and did provide a useful harvest as well. (I have read that the lobed leaves and cream-to-pink flowers are edible too but haven’t tried them myself. The bright red stems also produce a strong natural fiber.)

The important thing to know is that it is a “short-day” plant, meaning that it produces flower buds mainly when there’s less than 12 hours of light per day. With an early indoor start, my plants had a chance to produce flowers in late spring to early summer for a mid to late summer harvest, then another round of bloom for a fall harvest (the calyces of those flowers matured in time though the seeds didn’t). Because the performance can vary by climate and weather, I encourage you to do further research on how the plant performs in your particular area if you’re not open to simply giving it a try. My plants reached about 2 feet tall; apparently they can reach 6 feet in warmer areas. Full sun. Reportedly perennial in Zones 8 to 11; can be grown as an annual elsewhere, in the ground or in a container.

Collected in August 2022. At least 12 seeds.

Please read the germination information as well before ordering.

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