Hibiscus care should be considered from planting to caring for the mature plant. Begin by selecting the best possible site for the hibiscus plant. The site selected should have at least 6 to 8 hours of sunlight each day. They are quite adaptable to soil types, but they prefer soils with lots of organic matter.
To plant hibiscus, work up the soil in the area and plant the hibiscus at the same level it was growing in the container. Soak the root system several times after planting to drive out air pockets in the soil.
Water hibiscus frequently until the plant is well established, as they need a lot of water. Try to keep the plants constantly moist. After it is well established, it can tolerate both dry and moist conditions.
Fertilize each spring with 10-20-10 formulation or an organic fertilizer.
During the winter, hardy hibiscus can be trimmed back to about 12" above the ground after a killing frost. Once the soil is close to freezing solid, they should be heavily mulched. Pile the mulch at least 12" deep. You can cover the mulch with snow to provide even more insulation. They need to be kept cold, not frozen or warm.
In summary, hibiscus care is relatively easy. After planting on a good site, water and fertilize and provide winter protection. If you want to encourage better branching, pinch them lightly early in the growing season. They should not need pruning unless they get too large for their area. Once the new shoots have emerged in the spring, you can prune out the old stems.
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Growing hibiscus is not an arduous task. The occasional gardener can grow hardy hibiscus with good success by following a few simple suggestions. The first task for growing hibiscus is to select an appropriate site. The plant site should have adequate sunlight. The sunlight should be fully available for at least 6 to 8 hours a day.
The second growing condition that needs to be addressed is the soil. Hibiscuses are quite adaptable to soil types. Providing a location with highly organic soil will greatly enhance growth and flower production. To increase organic matter, it may be advisable to mix sphagnum peat moss into the planting soil. After planting, the soil needs to be kept moist constantly for the first year or two. When they are fully established, they can accommodate some drought or excessive moisture. Continue reading
Pruning hibiscus is not normally needed for the hardy hibiscus. Actually, these plants are herbaceous perennials, meaning their tops die down to the ground each winter, but new shoots will come roaring back into lush growth when soils warm the following spring. Because the tops die down each year, pruning is generally limited to controlling plant size when it gets too large for its area.