What hibiscus is this and what to do?

tombob(z6IL)October 12, 2006

My wife bought a hibiscus at the beginning of the summer at Sam's Club. It is a tall, potted plant with three, braided woody stems. The blooms are a red-orange and beautiful. After transplating into a larger pot, it flouerished all summer on our deck in full sun.

Now that winter is just around the corner--frost is predicted for tonight--I have brought the hibiscus inside until Indian summer returns, albeit briefly.

I know nothing about hibiscus. Is this paltn frost hardy if planted in the ground? If kept in a pot, can I keep it going inside in the winter?

Thanks for any info anyone can give me.

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decompost(z8 NC)

Hi tombob,
I'm not the greatest Hibiscus expert, but I'll share what I do know. ;^)

I feel certain that you are describing a tropical Hibiscus (H. rosa sinensis),
which has been pruned and braided into a"standard" or "tree-form" specimen.
This would not be hardy in zone 6,
they are not even hardy here, in my zone 8 garden.
I bring them in when the night time lows are in the 40's.

If you can provide the right conditions indoors,
you may be rewarded with prolific blooms all winter long.
But these plants do not enjoy change,
and if subjected to prolonged periods of lower temperatures or light levels,
they often react by denuding themselves of both flower buds and foliage.
:-0 . . . EEK!!
Kinda scary, but it doesn't mean your plant is dead,
. . . and they doesn't go truly dormant either,
so maintenance remains important, even if your plant looks like a bare stick.

I'll include a link below that gives some great info about winter care,
and explains it all better than I can.

Here is a link that might be useful: Tropical Hibiscus - winter care

    Bookmark   October 13, 2006 at 12:27PM
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birdsnblooms

Tom, I too am in Il and have been growing tropical hibs over 20 yrs.
I brought all my hibs inside 2 wks ago when night temps dipped in the low 40's. First clean leaves off so you don't bring any pests indoors..You can start w/an outdoor hose, including running water through soil.
All my hibs are then placed in a semi=unheatd room in se windows. At night I use artificial lighting, but this isn't mandatory. My hibs are fertilizer w/a special hib blend, once every three months..this food can be bought at www.plumeriapeople.com or www.stokestropicals.com
Hibsicus and African Violets are the only tropicals I feed yr round.
Hibs don't go dormant, so I treat them as I do other tropicals.
Plants may drop some leaves, but don't worry..it's just the plants acclimating to their new environment. I mist, use a humidifer, water well but let soil dry between waterings. A south or west window is best. W/proper care your hib can live on for many yrs..Good luck, Toni

    Bookmark   October 18, 2006 at 3:25PM
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