Indoor-Only Hibiscus: Need Light Advice

SusannahSBJuly 14, 2013

Hi all,

Last week I bought a gorgeous potted hibiscus and brought it home to my small NYC apartment.

I get a 2-3 hours of direct sunlight per day in south-facing windows. (The low amount of direct light is due to the tall buildings that tend to block the light as the sun moves.)

The hibiscus is clearly in distress, dropping leaves and looking very peaked. I was planning to get some kind of artificial light for the winter but now it seems I'll need it year-round.

Any advice? Since I rent, I can't get any kind of light that needs special wiring, etc.

[Cross-posted to "Growing under Lights" forum]

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TulsaRose, Tulsa OK(7a)

Assuming your plant is Hibiscus rosa-sinensis, a Tropical Hibiscus, you will find a ton of information at the link below. Don't worry too much about the leaf drop at this point as they will do that following changes in their atmosphere and growing conditions. It will bounce back after it makes itself at home. :-)

Here is a link that might be useful: Growing Tropical Hibiscus

    Bookmark   July 15, 2013 at 6:58AM
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Thank you! That article is really helpful and you've made me feel a lot better about the leaf drop. I think I've been giving it too much water too so I'm going to cut back on that and hope it starts getting comfortable soon.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2013 at 6:14PM
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Many tropical hibiscus can survive with only a few hours of direct sun. An environmental change will always results in leaf and bud drop. HVH has some good fertilizer products for indoor plants and great tips also. As for lighting, the wife and I put together a great set up for very low cost. We were able to sustain 20+ plants through last winter. If you get to this point, I can elaborate.

Hope this helps,

Here is a link that might be useful: HVH

    Bookmark   July 17, 2013 at 9:29PM
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