Plant Profile- Flor de Jamaica
Flor de Jamaica (Hibiscus sabdariffa)
Flor de Jamaica is known by many names including; Roselle or Sorrel. It’s not only stunning but is a highly versatile plant that is native to tropical and subtropical parts of Africa and Asia. Hibiscus is the genus of the Malvaceae family.
This beauty is known for its captivating calyces which attract attention from plant people and pollinators alike! Growing upwards of 7 ft or 2 meters and has large green leaves which are heart-shaped and deeply lobed. The striking red calyces are the fleshy structure that protects the flower bud. The calyces are rich with antioxidants and have tart, cranberry flavor that is complimentary in many culinary dishes.
Roselle is a sun loving plant so be sure to plant it somewhere it will get plenty of sun and have a good amount of space to grow, 3-6 feet. You can plant smaller complimentary herbs around the base that like part/sun, part/shade like Gotu Kola. They typically grow in warm humid climates and require well-draining soil and regular watering. They are a highly adaptable plant and can be grown in containers if you would like to keep your plant smaller.
This amazing plant has a long history of traditional medicinal use. The calyces are rich in vitamin C and have shown to have anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. They are often used to treat a wide range of ailments such as, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, wound healing, ease menstrual discomfort, fever, and urinary tract infections.
In addition to its medicinal properties, the Roselle plant is highly valued for its culinary uses. The calyces are used for natural food dyeing, tea, juice, jam and wine. Many cultures enjoy Roselle tea and it is a popular herbal remedy that is believed to have a range of medicinal properties including improving digestion and improve liver health.
Overall, Hibiscus sabdariffa is a multi-purposed and wonderful plant with a variety of both medicinal and culinary uses. Its striking appearance, bright tart flavor and rich cultural history makes it an easy choice to include in your home garden.
Starting playing with Flor de Jamaica Today with this yummy & medicinal recipe:
Circulatory Flor de Jamaica Tea
1 handful of dried Flor de Jamaica Calyces (20g)
Add to 1 liter of boiling water
Let it boil for 5-10 and then turn it off to steep for 10mins
Enjoy and if you like to learn more about tropical herbs and their uses
Join Amanda Luna for:
Atlas de Las Plantas Medicinales: Silvestres y Cultivadas en la Zona Tropical,
By: Eberhard Wedler