In more recent years, the story of the Hibiscus Hybrids shifted to Lincoln Nebraska. There, the now-famous Fleming Brothers became interested in hardy hibiscus.
The Flemings are a fascinating family. The three brothers never married, always stayed on the home property, and devoted their entire lives to hybridizing flowers. Their mother was the State Naturalist for Nebraska, so they had a deep knowledge of native plants growing up.
Today, they're famous as the creators of some of our most valued perennials from Dianthus ("Pinks") to Veronicas to Crape Myrtles. But later in life (the last brother passed away in recent years) they specialized in hybrid hibiscus, and what spectacular results they achieved!
Probably they're best known hybrid is the world famous "Kopper King." This stunning hibiscus not only has magnificent bi-colored flowers that sometimes reach a full foot (12") in diameter, the foliage is unique as well. Kopper King has copper-colored finely-cut leaves, making it doubly decorative in the garden.
Other famous Fleming Hybrids are "Old Yella", "Torchy", "Fireball", "Robert Fleming", "Dream Catcher", "Fantasia", and "Plum Crazy."