Meet Mark Cullen

Canada's best known gardening personality, Mark Cullen believes that Canadians of all ages need to play more - preferably in the dirt. A best-selling author with over 400,000 books in print, Mark reaches over one million Canadians every week through various media outlets. He is Home Hardware's horticultural spokesperson and regularly contributes to various magazines, gardening shows and newsletters. With a familiar style that people can relate to, he delivers a message that is compelling, fun, informative and inspirational - all based on his organic approach to gardening. In his spare time Mark enjoys driving his Ford Model A - and of course he loves to garden.

Rose of Sharon

~ August 24, 2011

Gardeners of every age will appreciate the beauty of the Rose of Sharon shrub. This plant makes a brilliant addition to any garden. I have planted a few of these in my own garden. These deciduous shrubs have a distinctive three-lobed leaf which is late to emerge in the spring. They are also available in a standard tree form or can be trained for espalier.

Rose of Sharon is a late bloomer. It starts in August and goes right through to the end of September or the first hard frost depending on where you live. They are available with bi-colour blooms such as red and white or purple and blue. They are also available in solid white, pink or blue. Some varieties are double flowering.

Rose of Sharon is hardy to zone 5 and prefers rich well drained soil in sunny locations. They can tolerate a range of soil acidity. These shrubs can grow to 4 meters high and 2 meters wide. However, with diligent pruning, they can easily be kept to 1.5 meters high and wide. Prune Rose of Sharon in the fall after it is done flowering as it blooms on new wood only. Pruning during the summer will limit the flowers that are produced but make any remaining ones larger.

This fall plant a Rose of Sharon in your garden. They are attractive to pollinators like honey bees and butterflies love them.