Hula Girl hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinesis)
Location: Kohala Coast, Big Island, Hawaii
This tropical hibiscus blossom is called Hula Girl. Unlike most hibiscus varieties, the blossoms of this cultivar do not immediately wilt when picked from the bush. Because the blossoms usually stay fresh for awhile after picking, they can be worn in the hair or pinned to clothing. They are thus favored by hula dancers who sometimes wear these blossoms as a part of their costume. It is said that this is how the Hula Girl hibiscus acquired its common name.
A cultivar of Hibiscus rosa-sinesis, the Hula Girl is one of the hardier hibiscus varieties in our garden. The blossoms are large -- nearly six inches (15 cm) across.