Please donate to support our ‘Plants to Save the Planet’ Project. The Project is directed at enabling designers of ‘carbon farms’ and ‘food forests’: agroecosystems of perennial plants, to choose the most appropriate plants for their requirements and site conditions. We are working on a subset of plants in the PFAF database identified as having the most potential for inclusion in such designs. We are adding search terms and icons to those plants pages, and providing a range of search options aligned to categories of plants and crop yields, with Help facilities including videos. More >>>

Follow Us:


Hibiscus tilliaceus - L.

Common Name Beach Hibiscus, Sea Hibiscus
Family Malvaceae
USDA hardiness 10-12
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Coastal swamps; edges of mangrove swamps
Range Origin: Pantropical. native to coastal areas of Australia, South East Asia and the South Pacific
Edibility Rating    (2 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (1 of 5)
Frost Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Wet Soil Full sun
Hibiscus tilliaceus Beach Hibiscus, Sea Hibiscus

Raffi Kojian
Hibiscus tilliaceus Beach Hibiscus, Sea Hibiscus


Translate this page:


Suited to coastal environments as it tolerates salinity and waterlogging. Carbon Farming Solutions - Industrial Crop: biomass, fiber. Agroforestry Services: living fence, crop shade, living trellis.

Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of cone
Hibiscus tilliaceus is an evergreen Tree growing to 8 m (26ft) by 6 m (19ft) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 8. The flowers are pollinated by Insects.
It is noted for attracting wildlife.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in saline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry moist or wet soil and can tolerate drought. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Hibiscus boninensis Nakai. Hibiscus tiliifolius Salisb. Hibiscus circinnatus Willd.Hibiscus porophyllus Vell. Hibiscus tortuosus Roxb. Pariti boninense (Nakai) Nakai. Pariti tiliaceum (L.) A. St.-Hil. Paritium abutiloides (Willd.) G. Don. Paritium tiliaceum (L.) A. Juss.


Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Flowers  Leaves
Edible Uses:

Young leaves and green bark eaten as a famine food. Leaves are eaten, femented into a sauce, used as a substrate for tempeh starter culture or boiled in salt water to form a beverage called Onge tea [183]. The flowers can be eaten as a potherb or dipped in batter and fried [183].

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Flowers have laxative properties.

Our new book Edible Shrubs is now available.

Edible Shrubs provides detailed information, attractively presented, on over 70 shrub species. They have been selected to provide a mix of different plant sizes and growing conditions. Most provide delicious and nutritious fruit, but many also have edible leaves, seeds, flowers, stems or roots, or they yield edible or useful oil.

Read More

Edible Shrubs Book

Other Uses

Design: Seaside; Coastal screening; Shade tree; Coastal street tree; Low maintenance garden, Container growing, Flower garden, Sand stabilization; Xerophytic, Bonsai,. Polynesians have used the wood for outriggers and canoes. Green bark used for dance skirts, strainers for liquids, and for tapa bark cloth. Used for rope and fishing nets. A soft, heavy and porous wood used for fuel and net floats or corks. Living posts with cropping potential for the bark. Hedging. Beach erosion. Coastal rehabilitation. Carbon Farming Solutions - Industrial Crop: biomass, fiber (Crops grown for non-food uses. Industrial crops provide resources in three main categories: materials, chemicals, and energy. Traditional materials include lumber and thatch, paper and cardboard, and textiles) [1-1]. Agroforestry Services: living fence, crop shade, living trellis.

Cultivation details

Agroforestry Services: Crop shade  Agroforestry Services: Living fence  Agroforestry Services: Living trellis  Industrial Crop: Biomass  Industrial Crop: Fiber  Management: Coppice  Minor Global Crop

Climate: subtropical to tropical. Humidity: humid. Sea Hibiscus is suited to coastal environments. It tolerates salinity and waterlogging, and can grow in a variety of coastal sands and soils. pH Level: Acid, Neutral, Alkaline. Soil Type: Sandy, Loamy, Sandy loam. Light: Sunny, Light shade. Soil Moisture: Well-drained, Moist soil. Tolerates light frost. Found at elevations from sea level to 800m (2,600ft) in areas that receive 900–2,500mm (35–98in) of annual rainfall. Carbon Farming Solutions - Cultivation: minor global crop. Management: coppice (Describes the non-destructive management systems that are used in cultivation) [1-1].

Temperature Converter

Type a value in the Celsius field to convert the value to Fahrenheit:



The PFAF Bookshop

Plants For A Future have a number of books available in paperback and digital form. Book titles include Edible Plants, Edible Perennials, Edible Trees, and Woodland Gardening. Our new book to be released soon is Edible Shrubs.

Shop Now


Seeds. Large cuttings

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Cotton Tree, Native Rosella

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Eastern and Northern Australia, Oceania, Maldives, South Asia, and Southeast Asia. Naturalized in Florida, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. Possibly native to Hawaii.

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

None Known

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Hibiscus acetosellaFalse Roselle, African rosemallow, Cranberry Hibiscus20
Hibiscus cannabinusKenaf, Brown Indianhemp22
Hibiscus diversifoliusSwamp Hibiscus21
Hibiscus heterophyllusNative Rosella20
Hibiscus moscheutosSwamp Rose Mallow, Crimsoneyed rosemallow, Wild Cotton, Common Rosemallow, Eastern Rosemallow, Swamp12
Hibiscus mutabilisCotton Rose, Dixie rosemallow22
Hibiscus radiatusMonarch Rosemallow. Ruby hibiscus, Clavelina21
Hibiscus rosa-sinensisChinese Hibiscus, Shoeblackplant, Hawaiian Hibiscus, Tropical Hibiscus, China Rose, Rose-of-China, S33
Hibiscus sabdariffaRoselle33
Hibiscus sinosyriacusRose Of Sharon42
Hibiscus syriacusRose Of Sharon, Althaea, Shrub Althea, Hardy Hibiscus42
Hibiscus trionumFlower Of An Hour21
Talipariti tiliaceumBeach Hibiscus, Sea Hibiscus, Cottontree, Mahoe32


Print Friendly and PDF

Expert comment



Botanical References

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

QR Code

What's this?

This is a QR code (short for Quick Response) which gives fast-track access to our website pages. QR Codes are barcodes that can be read by mobile phone (smartphone) cameras. This QR Code is unique to this page. All plant pages have their own unique code. For more information about QR Codes click here.

1. Copy and print the QR code to a plant label, poster, book, website, magazines, newspaper etc and even t-shirts.

2. Smartphone users scan the QR Code which automatically takes them to the webpage the QR Code came from.

3. Smartphone users quickly have information on a plant directly for the website on their phone.

Add a comment

If you have important information about this plant that may help other users please add a comment or link below. Only comments or links that are felt to be directly relevant to a plant will be included. If you think a comment/link or information contained on this page is inaccurate or misleading we would welcome your feedback at If you have questions about a plant please use the Forum on this website as we do not have the resources to answer questions ourselves.

* Please note: the comments by website users are not necessarily those held by PFAF and may give misleading or inaccurate information.

To leave a comment please Register or login here All comments need to be approved so will not appear immediately.

Subject : Hibiscus tilliaceus  
All the information contained in these pages is Copyright (C) Plants For A Future, 1996-2012.
Plants For A Future is a charitable company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales. Charity No. 1057719, Company No. 3204567,
Web Design & Management
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License. Some information cannot be used for commercial reasons or be modified (but some can). Please view the copyright link for more information.