Belongs to the Malvaceae family.
An erect spreading shrub to small tree with dark green leaves and white flowers with a red throat.
Hibiscus heterophyllus is a medium to large shrub of open habit, from about three to six metres high. The leaves are up to 200 millimetres long by 100 mm millimetres wide and may be linear to oval-shaped either entire or three-lobed.
Flowers are large, up to 150 millimetres in diameter of typical hibiscus shape. In common with most Hibiscus species, the individual flowers last only one to two days but new flowers continue to open over a long period, generally from spring through to summer. The blooms are white with a deep red centre.
The flowers are followed by hairy seed capsules, that contain a number of seeds. The hairs on the capsules can cause severe skin irritation and need to be handled with care.
The flower buds can be made into a jam. Other parts of the plant are also edible and have been used by Aboriginal people as a food source.
The species prefers full sun or light shade.
Pests are generally few but, in common with the exotic cultivars, hibiscus beetles can be a problem.
Doctrine of Signatures
The flowers are large, attractive and pure white with a deep reddish-purple throat. They have a delicately veined streak of reddish-pink on one side of each petal, giving a swirling, spiralling appearance as the flower unfolds. The veined streak is like the placenta where baby and mother’s blood supplies intermingle to give life to the newly forming foetus. It can also be likened to a trickle of blood that comes from a new wound.
The flowers close at night, curling into an inverted uterus shape. It is as if the flower folds up to hold the foetus, reminiscent of the way one curls up into a foetus shape when feeling fearful in the depth of the night.
At the base on the outside surface, the flower is a whitish to baby pink colour, mindful of the rosy hue of a newborn baby’s skin.
The stamen, which is a deep red colour, rises from the centre like a phallus seeking opportunity.
As the flowering bud opens, it untwists itself as if unwinding from a tight knot. It is as if the flower is twisted with pain and as it relaxes, it unwinds. The tortured look gives way to smooth un-creased petals, like the un-furrowing of a person’s brow, as they relax.
The centre of the flower is a deep mud red, like a pool of congealing blood.
The tree is slender and somewhat insubstantial looking. The leaves are palmately lobed and have a holey appearance as if they have been assaulted by something. This gives the impression of the aura being faulty, ill-formed or damaged, or wounds and blows on the skin from being attacked.
The thin-looking branches have fine prickles on them, as if they are transmitting prickly energy. They seem to be saying, ‘Stay away’ or ‘Don’t become too attached.’
The flowers appear only for a short time, and then wither on the stem. They seem to be transitory, ghost-like appearances by Spirit, as if they have only a moment in time to deliver their valuable message. Or it is as if their fleeting appearance suggests that it is only short bursts of activity that do the damage, and then life goes on again.
They gradually unfold as they open, giving the appearance of a swirling skirt, revealing the deep mud-red dirty centre, like a lack of clarity at the very heart of the matter.
Your Healing Challenges
Your Healing Outcomes
|For further discussion and case studies on Native Hibiscus, please purchase the book, Spirit of Woman Australian Wild Flower Essences|