7 Aug 2015

Flowering Plants of Kerala: Sleeping Hibiscus

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Kingdom: Plantae
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta or Angiosperms – Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicots
Subclass: Dilleniidae
Order: Malvales
Family: Malvaceae (The Mallow family)
Botanical name: Malvaviscus arboreus
Common Name: Turk's Cap Mallow or Sleeping Hibiscus
Malayalam Name: Mulaku Chembarathi
Habit: Perennial Shrub

The genera Malvaviscus is characterised by fleshy flowers and fruits. Its flowers look like Hibiscus buds and that's why known as Sleeping Hibiscus. The flowers won't open fully. Turk's Cap is so-called because its flowers resemble the red felt fez that Turkish men formerly wore. Hawaiians call this plant "Firecracker Hibiscus" since the flowers look like unexploded firecrackers. In Kerala, we call this "Mulaku Chemparathi"; "Mulaku" means Chilly and "Chemparathi" means Hibiscus. Two varieties are found: Red and Pink. The flower is having sweet nectar at the base; just pluck the flower and sip it!  

sleeping hibiscus
sleeping hibiscus
sleeping hibiscus
sleeping hibiscus
sleeping hibiscus
sleeping hibiscus
sleeping hibiscus

The above pictures were taken with Nikon Coolpix. Please click on each picture to get the full view.
Location: My garden at Kottayam, Kerala

Further Reading:

Flowers of India

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