Hawaiian hibiscus are seven species of hibiscus regarded as native to Hawaii. The yellow hibiscus is Hawaii's state flower. Although tourists regularly associate the hibiscus flower within experiences visiting the US state of Hawaii, and the plant family Malvaceae includes a relatively large number of species that are native to the Hawaiian Islands, those flowers regularly observed by tourists are generally not the native hibiscus flowers. Most commonly grown as ornamental plants in the Islands are the Chinese hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis) and its numerous hybrids.
The native plants in the genus Hibiscus in Hawaii are thought to have derived from four independent colonization events for the five endemic species (four closely related species plus the yellow-flowered species) and one each for the two indigenous species.
The native hibiscus found in Hawaii are:
In addition to the species of Hibiscus listed above, flowers of several other related Hawaiian plants of the family Malvaceae resemble Hibiscus flowers, although are generally smaller. The endemic genus, Hibiscadelphus, comprises seven species described from Hawaii. Three of these are now thought to be extinct and the remaining four are listed as critically endangered or extinct in the wild. Another endemic genus, Kokia, comprises four species of trees. All but one (K. kauaiensis) are listed as either extinct or nearly extinct in the wild.
Three endemic species of the pantropical genus, Abutilon occur in Hawaii: A. eremitopetalum, A. menziesii, and A. sandwicense; all are listed as endangered. Cotton plants (Gossypium spp.), whose bright yellow flowers are certainly hibiscus-like, include one endemic: G. tomentosum, uncommon but found in dry places on all the main islands except Hawaii. The widespread milo (Thespesia populnea) is an indigenous tree with yellow and maroon flowers.
South Korea's national flower is the Hibiscus syriacus which is widely found in Hawaii, too.
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