mikeingeorgia
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Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 10:03 pm
Location: Senoia, GA

Purple Rose of Sharon for hummers

Hey all, I have a Rose of Sharon that I planted about 5 yrs ago next to my front porch. It has all purple flowers and is about 8 ft tall and about 7 ft wide. The hummingbirds just love it and will visit it in groups. I recently dug up one of the new smaller offshoots from this plant and put it on the side of the house. It's about 2' tall already as I water it daily. And, there's another smaller one about 1' tall growing that I intend to dig up and move farther away from the big one. So, if you can get one of these plants to grow in your area, they definitely get my recommendation for attracting hummingbirds.
USDA Zone 7

raptor
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Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jul 01, 2008 10:07 am

Not a good host species for humminbgirds

doccat5
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Posts: 399
Joined: Thu Apr 03, 2008 2:48 pm
Location: VA

I disagree, raptor. I too have a several purple ROSs and have excellent success with attracting hummers.
doccat5

I'd rather be gardening!

TheLorax
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Posts: 1416
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 2:40 am
Location: US

They do attract them, that's for sure. Not a great "host" species though.

The plant's scientific name is Hibiscus syriacus.
The original poster is in Georgia. That plant would do very well for those in the Southeast but would also grow just fine where you garden and also where I garden. We have neighbors who have them and we get a considerable number of volunteers over here because of other people's plants. Rose of Sharon wouldn't be the best species to choose for wildlife even though it does draw them in. Incredibly attractive plant though. Bees seem to be attracted to it in groves too.

More information here if you are interested-
https://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=HISY
This particular species, and its cultivars, is appearing on the Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council's lists.

There are currently two books I use when running hummingbird and butterfly workshops-
Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants
Birds and Plant Regeneration by Tara Gandhi

I've already begun to work in information from Tallamy's 'Bringing Nature Home: How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens'.

The USDA site has a great basic list of alternative plants-
https://www.usna.usda.gov/Gardens/faqs/InvasivesAlternatives.html

para_chan
Full Member
Posts: 39
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2008 1:57 am
Location: Jacksonville, NC

My parents have a Rose of Sharon tree in their yard-I never found any volunteers though. Probably was due to being in the Northeast.

As an aside- I'm starting to get discouraged because it seems like every plant I grew up with is invasive, especially in the South, where I now live. :(

TheLorax
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Posts: 1416
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 2:40 am
Location: US

I totally understand how you feel. I was rather frustrated at first myself, seemed as if all the local nurseries were selling was the easy to propagate cheap plants. Over the years, I've learned that the vast majority of plants aren't invasive or on any noxious weeds lists. Sure does seem as all the most popular ones are invasive though doesn't it. Last year I found two decent plants at Lowes which was a pleasant surprise. I snapped them up fast! Mostly I go to upscale and native plant nurseries these days. Got tired of being "enticed" every time I looked at cheap plants at stores like WalMart and Home Depot. The other deal for me with the big box stores was that much of their nursery stock was coming from the south. Kinda tough on a plant to be grown in a zone 7 or 8 to be sold in a zone 4 or 5 even if it is a mighty oak. I was losing an incredible amount of plants and it took me quite a while to figure out why. Have you ever noticed that lots of trees from these types of places are all grown in and around TN? Great if you garden anywhere near that state but not so great if you're gardening in AZ or MN or even where I garden. Very frustrating to see all those cheap plants that I'd like to buy.

EarthFirstNatives
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Posts: 15
Joined: Fri Jun 20, 2008 5:28 pm
Location: Egg Harbor TWP, NJ

seemed as if all the local nurseries were selling was the easy to propagate cheap plants.

Of course...thats where the profit margin is, the big box mentality. I know very well how these guys operate, and the point is to make $$. And what doesnt sell, get thrown down the shoot, that is painful to throw an otherwise perectly good, but bloomed out plant that no one will buy down the shoot to it almost certain eventual death. Occasionally they will reduce them to see if they can get something for them, but, not for long as it is not an attractive cart. I used to try to cut them back and MirGro them so they would bloom again, an hopefully someone would buy them, but the CORPS don't appreciate it.

Raven

TheLorax
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Posts: 1416
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 2:40 am
Location: US

The big box mentality is capitalizing on the consumer who isn't taking the time to educate him/herself.

Regarding gardeners as far north as me buying all the cheap trees grown in the south, it's big money for them. The tree dies, the customer comes back and buys another one.

Double dipping and we allow it.

Regarding gardeners buying invasive species, similar deal. The last two years our big box stores have been really pushing Bradford pears, Cleveland Select pears, European and Japanese Barberry, Burning Bushes, and a few other highly invasive species. Turns out some states out east banned the sale of all of these plants and then some. The states in the Midwest and elsewhere weren't quick enough to respond so there have been firesales across the board. A month ago I received a preliminary list of plants that are going to be banned in my state and the plants banned in those eastern states are supposedly going to be banned in my state too. Big box stores and many garden centers have been using this window of opportunity to dump all that plant material on uneducated buyers in states where they're still legal to sell and it worked... and they profited... and they'll profit again when the list of invasive species for my state is updated because they'll begin advertising that certain plants are illegal to sell because they were learned to be invasive and they just happen to be offering some "nice" plants that aren't invasive. There will be many people who will dig up "bad" plants they bought and will buy "nice" replacements.

Double dipping and we allow it.

Rose of Sharon and Butterfly Bush are on the list of plants that are known to be invasive that are appearing on this preliminary list of plants to be added to our invasive species list. Some nurseries are fighting this list tooth and nail. Claiming these types of plants comprise a significant portion of their inventory and they don't know how they'll stay in business and send their kids to college if they can't sell them and that they didn't know and what are they going to do with all this inventory they've got... why they'll pedal it to other states that don't have laws on the books to protect themselves counting on butterfly and hummingbird gardeners to buy these species... and they will.

What really burns me is that these plants are invasive for a reason, they repeatedly escape cultivation. So, the nurseries selling the garbage cheap plants get to make money hand over fist and everybody pays (our tax dollar) to clean up the offspring of these plants when they take root in natural areas.

We're in effect subsidizing them. Isn't that special.

Get's better, the uneducated consumer looking for a quick fix to get rid of the "bad" plants s/he planted goes out and stands in aisles of chemicals at big box stores and garden centers trying to figure out which one to buy to get rid of the "bad" plants.

Triple dipping as far as I'm concerned and we allow it.

And when Joe Blow consumer from sea to shining sea uses these chemicals and they leach into our water supplies...

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