Hibiscus leaves yellowing...

sumognat(SE FL)January 29, 2009


About 3 weeks ago, I planted 4 tropical hibiscus (3 gal) alongside a side of a fence (northern exposure) and noticed this morning that 2 of them are starting to have yellowing leaves, which are starting to drop. Can someone help me figure out what might be the cause, since there could be many: 1) under-watering, 2) planting related, or 3) cold weather related?

1. Under-watering: I haven't been watering them too much--maybe 2 times a week because they are in the shade for most of the day and the weather has been pretty balmy for the most part (50s-60 at night, 70s-80s during the day). I was a bit worried about the lack of direct light at first, but I thought they might be okay because they will get more sun as the year progresses and the position of the sun changes. I am fairly confident that they will be in full sun when the summer gets here; the fence just happens to shade them in the wintertime.

2. Planting: I did plant them according to the directions on the plant label, except now that I am better educated about planting hibiscus AFTER having planted them already, I am considering digging them up, amending the soil with mushroom compost & better soil, and replanting. When I planted them, I just used topsoil and mixed it with the sandy soil that is typical of South Florida; the hole I dug for each plant was fairly large and appropriate according to the label.

3. Cold weather: We also had a cold snap at the end of last week, where the temperature dropped to slightly above freezing. They seemed to be okay afterwards, though some of the blooms were a bit mangled. It started blooming well again earlier this week, and now their leaves are yellowing and starting to fall off. Could the cold temps have caused this? It seems a bit late--I would think the leaves would have yellowed shortly after the cold weather rather than a week later.

Maybe I am underwatering? Everything seemed to be going well for the last 3 weeks! :(


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sumognat(SE FL)

I was under-watering. I pulled back the mulch, stuck my finger deep down in the root ball, and discovered dry soil. I slowly deep-watered each plant for about 10 minutes each and they all perked up the next day.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 6:22PM
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Living here 29 yrs. have always had hibiscus and studied them, yes, the cold snap will create yellow leaves, but most important is they do not like wet feet, in other words a light watering once a week in our now dry season is just fine, in our rainy season, mine are under the over hang of the house, plus wehave gutter all around, so they do not drown. my wallpaper on my screen is this shot of my pink..notice a couple yellow leaves this is normal:

    Bookmark   February 20, 2009 at 9:43AM
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