Cotton rose (fuyoo)


Cotton Rose, Rose-Mallow (fuyoo)

***** Location: Japan, other areas
***** Season: Early Autumn
***** Category: Plant


fuyō, fuyou, rose mallow, fuyoh
white cotton rose, shiro fuyoo 白芙蓉しろふよう
red cotton rose, beni fuyoo 紅芙蓉 べにふよう

flower of the cotton rose, hana fuyoo 花芙蓉

This lovely flower has been introduced to Japan before the Muromachi period. The pretty face of a woman is compared to this flower (fuyoo no kao 芙蓉の顔).

A "peak like the cotton rose" (fuyoo hoo 芙蓉峰) is a poetic way of referring to Mt. Fuji.

Click HERE to look at some Fuji Photos !

There are also doubly filled flowers (yae fuyoo 八重芙蓉).

. Look at them on my haiga here .

© Photos by Gabi Greve, Autumn 2006


© The Japan Times, Sept. 1, 2005

Fuyo (Rose-mallow or Cotton rose)


For centuries people have grown these shrubs (Hibiscus mutabilis) for their large, attractive flowers. They bloom from late summer until the first days of winter are near. Unusually, the flowers change color -- starting pure white and then turning to clear pink before finally turning a deep purplish-pink after about three days.

In China and Korea, the blooms are valued as herbs, and they are used in infusions or added to various foods. Hibiscus plants are members of the large Malvaceae, or mallow family of plants. Typical of the family, the flowers' many stamens are fused together in a central tube. The leaves are large and woolly as are the sepals that enclose the flower buds. This rough surface helps to protect the plant from predators and also preserves moisture, so that the shrubs can survive periods of drought.

In warm climates, the shrubs can grow to a height of 4 meters. Although this hibiscus is originally from southern China, it has become popular in the southern states of America.

There, the fluffy seed heads remind people of another famous member of the mallow family, Gossypium spp., otherwise known as the cotton plant. And although it is not a rose, and neither from Dixie, Americans have affectionately named this Oriental shrub the Cotton -- or Confederate -- Rose.



The Rose Mallow Haiku Class

Worldwide use


Arali (Nerium oleander)

This plant seems similar to the cotton rose. It is often used for prayer ceremonies (pooja).

Celebrating Andal

Things found on the way


Round the deserted mansion
Hens take their ease,
Rose-mallows are blooming.

Masaoka Shiki (1866-1902)


blushing cotton rose —
cooling her cheeks
in the breeze

Look at the Haiga by Yasuhiko Shirota

Related words

CLICK for more photos

***** fuyoo no mi 芙蓉の実 (ふようのみ)
seeds of the cotton rose

kigo for mid-autumn

The seed pods are very attractive and used for ikebana and dry flower arrangements.


***** . hibiscus (bussooge 仏桑花) .
Hibiscus, or rosemallow. family Malvaceae
fusooka 扶桑花(ふそうか)
kookin 紅槿(こうきん)

"rose of sharon from Okinawa", ryuukyuu mokuge
also called : Rose of China, rosa sinensis




Anonymous said...

Horinji Temple (Hoorin-Ji 法輪寺)
Cotton Roses and Daruma san

Known as the fuyo in Japan, the cotton rose is a flower elegantly blooming in for only one day in midsummer. With five thin, fragile petals, this white or white-pink flower blossoms only briefly from morning until sunset.

Fuyo flowers can be seen in early August in the garden of the Daruma-dera temple, which is located in the northwest of Kyoto City.

 Read the details HERE !


Gabi Greve - WKD said...

Masaoka Shiki

fuyo saite furuike no oshi yamome nari

cotton roses flowering -
the mandarin duck in the old pond
is a widower

MORE about the Old Pond and Shiki