hi·bis·cus | \hī-ˈbi-skəs, hə-\

Definition of hibiscus 

: any of a large genus (Hibiscus) of herbs, shrubs, or small trees of the mallow family with large showy flowers and usually dentate leaves

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Did You Know?

There are about 250 species of shrubs, trees, and herbaceous plants in the genus Hibiscus, which belongs to the mallow family. They are native to warm temperate and tropical regions. Several are cultivated as ornamentals for their showy flowers. The tropical Chinese or Hawaiian hibiscus, which is also called China rose, has large, somewhat bell-shaped reddish blossoms. The East African hibiscus, a drooping shrub, is often grown in hanging baskets indoors.

Examples of hibiscus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Common flavors in South America include hibiscus, tamarind, soursop, pineapple and papaya. Anna Thomas Bates, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Blueberry Honeydew Agua Fresca is a refreshing, light drink without too much sugar," 11 July 2018 It's made with an Angry Orchard rosé cider base which then gets infused with pineapple juice and hibiscus. Olivia Harrison, refinery29.com, "This Summer's Biggest Boozy Trend Just Got Its Own Ice Cream Flavor," 10 July 2018 In the garden’s courtyards and Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, visitors can view pineapple, papaya and banana plants, hundreds of hibiscus, sugarcane, gardenias and bougainvillea. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "See Georgia O’Keeffe’s Little-Known Hawaii Paintings Blossom Next to Real Plants," 30 May 2018 But at the three-day Boston Calling music festival recently, a significant subset of the mostly college-aged crowd was wearing classic Hawaiian shirts — splashy prints of hibiscus and palm trees, the louder the better. James Sullivan, BostonGlobe.com, "Aloha to your father’s Hawaiian shirts," 28 June 2018 Iguana-proof plants: Iguanas are herbivores and love to munch on bougainvillea, hibiscus, orchids, mangoes and bananas, according to the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Extension. Doreen Christensen, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Expert tips on how to control iguanas," 21 June 2018 The Lil’ Pop Shop in both West Philly (265 S. 44th St.) and Rittenhouse (229. S. 20th St.) has mastered the new-age Popsicle with fresh-fruit infusions of whole raspberries and lime, or coconut milk with hibiscus. Craig Laban, Philly.com, "The best icy desserts in Philadelphia | Craig LaBan," 3 July 2018 During my visit, Tuffy’s had three ciders available: the dry apple namesake cider; a sour lemongrass ginger cider called Afternoon Delight, and a farmhouse cider with hibiscus, cherry and apple called Jamaica Dupe Noir. Lauren Delgado, OrlandoSentinel.com, "First sip at Sanford cidery Tuffy's Bottle Shop and Lounge," 10 May 2018 The spirit is distilled from Kansas wheat and steeped with grand and Roman wormwood, fennel, star anise, hyssop, spearmint, peppermint, melissa leaf (lemon balm), chamomile and hibiscus. Anne Brockhoff, kansascity, "Is your cocktail in season? Bartenders letting gardens dictate what's in your glass," 24 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hibiscus.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hibiscus

1706, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hibiscus

New Latin, from Latin, marshmallow

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Last Updated

16 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for hibiscus

The first known use of hibiscus was in 1706

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English Language Learners Definition of hibiscus

: a type of shrub that has large colorful flowers

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Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about hibiscus

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one that holds something together

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