Wild Hibiscus


Wild Hibiscus

Latin Name

Hibiscus engleri


The Wild Hibiscus is one of several yellow-flowered hibiscus typified by 5 large petals and branched style. These plants are slender shrubs or small trees with rough leaves and branches. The leaves are usually lobed with tooth margins and are covered with rough, star-shaped hairs. The large cup-shaped flowers are scattered along the branches on thin stalks.

They are often yellow with a dark eye; the flowers are very delicate and last only a day before wilting; fresh ones open each morning. The stamens and stigmas are joined to form a conspicuous stalk in the centre of the flower. The pink coloured species is also common in the Park. The flowering time of this plant is mainly in summer. Some of these Hibiscus plants are invasive weeds from other countries.


The Wild Hibiscus mainly grows in savanna and thickets and the Hibiscus genus is widespread across the continent.


The Hibiscus is related to the cotton plant and the seeds of some species also have a tuft of silky hairs like cotton.

Field Notes

There are more than 50 species of Hibiscus in South Africa alone occurring in a range of habitats. The flowers are very attractive for a range of insects including butterflies and bees and in turn attract birds that prey on the insects.

Kruger National Park - South African Safari