Hibiscus are perennial plants which thrive in hot and humid climates. They grow well in moist soil with good drainage. Their leaves are long and slender, and they have a waxy appearance. These plants need lots of sunlight, but do not require much water.
The flowers bloom from early spring until late summer or fall depending upon location. Flowers are white, pink, purple, red and yellow. They are fragrant and attract pollinators such as bees.
These plants are very drought tolerant. If watered sparingly during dry periods they will recover quickly without any damage to their foliage or flower buds. However, if overwatered they may suffer wilting and die back completely. Hibiscus flowers produce little seeds that germinate easily when exposed to light and air.
Seeds usually float free in the wind, so they must be protected from rain and other moisture sources.
In some areas of Florida, hibiscus are grown for ornamental purposes. They are planted in beds or containers to provide a colorful accent around homes and gardens. Some people plant them as houseplants because they look nice against the wall.
Hibiscus flowers do not last forever; they eventually wilt and drop off after several years of neglect. Some old-fashioned varieties are large and spectacular enough to warrant drying or freezing. One can clip the flowers off when they are in full bloom. Use a sharp pair of scissors or pruners to avoid damaging the plant.
Place the flowers into a large paper bag, remove the air, and hang it somewhere cool and dry. The paper bag provides ventilation, so do not seal it completely. It may take several days for the flowers to dry completely.
Mature hibiscus plants can grow up to 8 feet tall. They will need support such as a trellis or stake unless one wants them to sprawl along the ground. It is possible to trim them into a smaller shape if desired. Locate the main stem and prune off all other stems that grow from it.
After the stems are cut back to the main plant, new side branches will form and produce flowers in about 2 months.
Hibiscus plants should be deadheaded immediately after each flower dies. This will encourage the plant to produce more flowers and not to devote scarce energy resources to seed production. The seeds may grow if allowed to mature and drop to the ground, but they are often slow to germinate and may or may not resemble their parents.
Most hibiscus do best in moist but well drained soil. They have fairly large root systems and benefit from added fertilizer. Too much nitrogen tends to produce lots of foliage and fewer flowers, so use a high carbon combination plant food to keep them flowering heavily throughout the summer.
Weeds should be controlled before they start growing by keeping the area around the base of the plant free of any vegetation touching the stems. Stems should be gently brushed whenever one is walking or working nearby to prevent damage from people and pets.
Hibiscus responds well to hard pruning if done in late winter or early spring. This causes an abundance of side shoots to form and produce more flowers. The more flowers you cut the plant, the more it will produce. Start by trimming off any dead or damaged stems and then cut away about one third of the oldest stems near the base of the plant.
Scales insects are tiny, flat insects that resemble grains of sand. They can be red, brown, black or yellowish in color and usually hide on the underside of leaves. They suck out the juices of plant tissues and excrete a sweet substance called honeydew, which encourages the growth of a black mold that makes the plant parts very sticky. Ants love this honeydew and protect the insects by feeding off of the honeydew and protecting the scales from natural enemies.
To control them, use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol and wipe off the adult scales and their honeydew. Repeat daily until they are gone. You may need to use a systemic insecticide suggested on the back of the label as a last resort if the bugs are too hard to control with the swabs or if they keep coming back.
I hope these tips are helpful to you. Please stop in again soon to see us.
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Spring is finally here! Which means yard and garden projects will soon be in full swing. Over the next few months, we’ll focus on some of the more common plants and flowers you’ll find at your local garden center in an effort to help you care for them once you get them home. So whether you have a green thumb or black thumb, we’ll help make sure your efforts turn out green!This time we’re going to focus on:.
Creeping Charlie is a partially deciduous, low-growing (creeping) evergreen ground cover that is typically grown for use in shaded areas. It spreads by stolons (above ground stems that take root) and can be a fast grower if not kept in check. It can be used as a lawn substitute, a ground cover, in rock gardens, and in dark shaded areas of the landscape.It prefers moist soil and should be trimmed regularly to keep it from running over flower beds and paths. It can be grown from seed, but is more commonly propagated by division or cuttings. It can tolerate partial sun, but doesn’t do well in dry soil.Here are some tips for caring for your Creeping Charley:It prefers a pH of 6.5 to 7 (slightly acidic) and a loamy soil that is well drained. It cannot tolerate wet feet, so if you have low spots in your yard that tend to pool water, this isn’t the plant for you..A soil test will tell you if your soil is lacking in what this plant requires. If it is, add some dirt in the spring and worked into the soil. If it isn’t, you’re good to go.This ground cover can grow quickly, so you’ll want to keep an eye on it. You can trim it with hedge trimmers or by pulling out individual plants. You can also top dress it with mulch, but make sure the mulch doesn’t touch the stems as this could cause stem rot.You can find Creeping Charley at most garden centers. It can also be found online here: 2016 Nursery Guide ….
Sources & references used in this article:
Hibiscus rosa-sinensis by EF Gilman – Institute of Food and Agriculture Sciences, 1999 – hort.ifas.ufl.edu
Effect of different rates of inorganic fertilizer on physiology, growth and yield of okra (‘Abelmoschus esculentus’) cultivated on Bris soil of Terengganu, Malaysia by K Palm – Tropical Foliage Plants: A Grower’s Guide, 1998 – Ball Pub
Effects of Fertilization on Potassium and Magnesium Deficiencies Associated with Flowering in Hong Kong Orchid Tree (Bauhinia× blakeana Dunn) by MM Khandaker, F Nor M, T Dalorima… – … Journal of Crop …, 2017 – search.informit.com.au