Zone 6 Hardiness: What Is It?
Hardiness refers to the level of susceptibility or resistance to certain conditions. There are two main types of zones: tropical and temperate. Tropical zones have hot temperatures (above 100°F/38°C) and extreme humidity (80%+). These areas experience frequent heat waves, heavy rains, floods, hurricanes, typhoons and other natural disasters. They may even suffer from epidemics such as malaria. Temperate zones have cool temperatures (below 50°F/10°C), moderate humidity (60-70%), and little to no extremes of temperature or weather. People living in these zones are generally less likely to get sick than those living in tropical climates.
The term “hardy” is used when referring to a plant’s ability to survive harsh environments. A plant with high tolerance to cold will be able to withstand colder temperatures than one with low tolerance. For example, a tomato plant grown in a northern climate would not survive freezing temperatures. On the other hand, a tomato plant grown in southern climates could survive freezing temperatures without any problems.
Zone 6 Habits And Planting Zones Of Hibiscus
Hibiscus are native to South America and are very adaptable plants. They thrive well in both warm and cool zones. They grow quite well in both tropical and temperate zones. They can be planted and grown in zones 5-11. These plants are actually quite hardy, able to survive severe summer heat and winter cold.
They grow very large, up to 20 feet tall, and flower throughout the entire year when grown outdoors. For this reason they can even be used as privacy screens when arranged together in a field. These are just some of the amazing traits of hibiscus plants. You can also learn more about them in this article, Zone 6 Hibiscus Plants – Growing Hibiscus In Zone 6 Gardens.
Hibiscus are known by many different names. They are sometimes called rose mallows due to their large, round and heart-shaped leaves. The flowers may be purple, red, white, green or yellow. All hibiscus produce beautiful flowers. There are over 200 different species of these plants worldwide.
They are related to cotton and okra plants.
All types of hibiscus perform best in zones 8-11. These plants should never be grown or planted in zones 1-7 due to freezing winter temperatures. This also means that they should not be grown or planted in zones 7-1 either, due to extremely high summer temperatures. It is best to grow them in zone 6 where the summers are warmer but not overly hot and the winters are cool but not overly cold.
In this article we also talk about how to grow hibiscus indoors. Learn more about it here, How To Grow Rose Mallow Hibiscus Indoors.
Hibiscus are very easy to grow from seed. It’s preferable to start the seeds in late spring or early summer so that they will be able to grow all season long. If you live in zones 5-7, these plants should be planted outside where they are able to receive full sun. They will flower best when grown in full sun. Zones 8-10 can grow these outside or indoors.
Hibiscus can also be grown in large containers and kept year round indoors in zones 1-4. This is a good option for people that like to bring the beauty of the outdoors inside for everyone to enjoy, especially if you live in an area that has harsh winters. They can also be kept as houseplants in zones 5-7.
You can grow hibiscus from seeds or from plants. The seeds of these plants are easy to germinate. They should be planted about 1/4 inch deep and kept warmer than most other types of plants. Most experts recommend starting the seeds indoors around mid to late spring.
If you start with seeds make sure to plant them in sterile soil and keep them warm. A casing layer of perlite or vermiculite set on top of the soil will help with keeping the soil temperature constant. Just like many other plant seeds, hibiscus seeds should not be washed before planting. This will prevent them from sprouting.
Soak the seeds in water for about six hours before planting. This will allow them to become fully hydrated which is important for proper growth and development. Plant the seeds about 1/4 inch deep.
Hibiscus plants prefer light to medium soils that do not contain a lot of clay. A soil that is high in sand and loam with a little bit of organic matter added is ideal.
These plants need full sun or at least six hours of direct sunlight everyday. They can survive in partial shade, but to get the best blooms full sun is recommended. They need ample water but not too much. The soil around the surface should be damp but not swimming in water.
Hibiscus plants grown from seeds will begin to bloom in the second or third year. The mature plants bloom more and have larger blooms. Deadheading the spent flowers can prolong the life of your plants.
Take cuttings from plants that are at least two years old. Cuttings should be taken in the spring or early summer. Cut at an angle about 3/4 of an inch below a node, and remove the leaves lower than the nodes on the cutting. Dip the cut end in rooting hormone then stick it in some seed starting mix. Keep them in a humid location that is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
It should take about two months for them to root.
In areas with mild winters they can be planted out after the last spring frost. They should be planted about 10 to 12 inches apart. They need well-drained soil and if possible raised beds will help since they do not like to have their roots sit in water.
Plant them in full sun or an area that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight a day. If planting them in a container, a large wooden barrel works well. Make sure the container has good drainage. They do not like their roots to be wet or soggy, so make sure the container has drainage holes.
Apply fertilizer at the beginning of each growing season. This will ensure that they receive the nutrients they need to produce beautiful blooms. A general-purpose fertilizer will work well.
Deadhead, or remove, the spent blooms as soon as they begin to fade. If the plant is left to go to seed it will divert its energy away from blooming as well as produce many seeds instead of blooms. It’s best to start off with a clean slate and only allow for vegetative growth so all the energy goes towards producing larger and more beautiful blooms.
Prune them back in the spring to remove any leggy stems or damaged stems. The plants will respond by producing more lush foliage and larger blooms.
This is a guide on how to plant and care for hibiscus plants. They are one of the most versatile and beautiful flowers in existence.
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