How to Grow Hardy Hibiscus – A Complete Guide 2022

Native to North America, Hardy Hibiscus has large flowers with tissue-thin, ruffled petals which come in blooms of red, white, magenta, and pink. Although they look quite similar to the Tropical Hibiscus flowers, they possess different characteristics that make them a lot different. This article is about how to grow hardy Hibiscus.

For example, while Tropical Hibiscus flowers come in single or double forms, Hardy Hibiscus come in single blooms only. While Tropical Hibiscus has glossy green leaves, Hardy Hibiscus comes in heart-shaped leaves in a dark-green shade.

Hardy Hibiscus is a non-tropical plant that can survive harsh outdoor conditions, so if you want to add new plants to your garden, they could be your best choice.

However, to plant Hardy Hibiscus successfully, you need to adopt the best planting, cultivation, and growth practices to see the best results. Don’t worry if you don’t know how to go about it right now though, because this article will help.

In this article you will learn all about the different types of Hardy Hibiscus flowers, as well as get the step-by-step guide to how to plant, grow and care for Hardy Hibiscus in your garden.

Let’s begin!


Hardy Hibiscus Types 

Hardy Hibiscus comes in several species, cultivars, and hybrids. However, one major similarity all species share in common is their flower size. They are all large flowers, usually between 10-12 inches.

Although some may come in smaller sizes depending on their origin and species, they are often the largest flowers in any garden. Additionally, they come in varying lengths, ranging from 2 to 10 feet.

Let’s take a look at some common Hardy Hibiscus types.

Hardy Hibiscus types

  • Hibiscus Moscheutus Robert Fleming 

The Hibiscus Moscheutus Robert Fleming is a Hardy Hibiscus that is famous for its rich red flowers with yellow tubes for the stamen. It blooms non-stop in its season, and each flower lasts for about 1-2 days, as new flowers open every day.

They bloom rapidly, and flourish in full sun and normal moist soil. They have a high tolerance to heat and humidity as well, and are best in a location with adequate protection from wind.

  • Hibiscus Moscheutus Summerific

This type of Hardy Hibiscus flower thrives during summer and often disappears during winter. It is a 3-foot plant, and its flowers come in white with a dark red eye and pale pink petals.

It’s rather compact-sized when compared to other variants, making it perfect for smaller gardens.

  • Hibiscus Lady Baltimore

Hibiscus Lady Baltimore comes in a soft pink shade, with a clear red eye zone and dark green leaves. It’s about 4 to 5 feet when mature, and grows best in moist soil under full sun exposure, generally around July-August or September-October.

Propagation 

Propagation is a critical thing you must do to grow Hardy Hibiscus. You can do this in three ways; by seed, stem cuttings, and crown division.

Let’s dive into the details of each method below:

  • By Seed

If you want to save on cost, propagation by seed is often the best way to go. But you can’t always predict the outcome with hybrid plants, although this can be a good thing when you are open to growing different Hardy Hibiscus varieties in your garden.

Below are helpful tips to follow when propagating by seed:

  • If you are in Zone 6 or a colder climate, start your seeds indoors for about three months. But if you are in Zone 7 or a warmer area, prepare a bed and plant them in it after the previous frost date.
  • Then, dip the seeds overnight and plant about a half-inch deep the following day.
  • If you are planting in a flat, prepare for 50 to 60% humidity under full sun exposure.
  • Harden the seedlings slowly by displaying them outdoors where the wind and sun are for about 30 minutes the first time. Then, slowly add an hour every day for about five days before your transplant. Start this when the last frost is close.
  • Stem cutting

If you want to use this method, then consider doing this by spring or early summer for the best outcome.

Follow this process for best results:

  • Slice off a section of softwood that is about 5 inches long. Get rid of flowers or flower buds in the node area.
  • Find a dish and spout some rooting hormone in it, dampen the stem ends, and soak it in the powder.
  • Make a large hole in the middle of the soil to prevent the rooting hormone from being removed when you put the cutting inside. Then, shove the soil over all sides of the cutting and water properly.
  • Use a plastic bag to sheath the cutting, and put it in a warm area of about 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • You will begin to see it sprouting new leaves after eight weeks. When you do, place it in a bigger pot after the cutting has grown its root.
  • Sow it in the ground during spring.
  • Crown divisions 

Crown division is one of the best ways to allow your plants to grow properly. Ensure that you separate the Hardy Hibiscus you plant by seed with caution though, to prevent lasting taproot damage.

Additionally, although Hardy Hibiscus propagated with the stem cuttings often grow shallow taproots, it’s helpful to ensure there is no form of root interference.

Follow these steps to carry out root divisions:

  • Clear out mulch in your planting location and set it aside. (You can use it again if you do this).
  • Start 12 inches from behind the flower. Plow about 2 feet below the root system. Get on the other side as well, and ensure you get a small part with fewer stems.
  • Take the roots from the plant, but be careful not to smash bigger primary roots as you do this.
  • Slice part of the root mass from the stem carefully, to avoid breaking the link between the root and stem.
  • Clear out any bad root systems, and cultivate it with a transplant fertilizer.
  • Create a site if you are transplanting in a bed, but select a pot longer than the root mass if you’re transplanting it in a pot.


OUR FAVORITES

  • Grows in abundance
  • Offers easy maintenance
  • Number of seeds: 10
CHECK PRICE →
  • Come with many seeds
  • Have about three different colors
  • Are easy to grow
CHECK PRICE →
  • A beautiful addition to your garden
  • Grow to about 24 to 36 inches after maturity
  • Style: Outside Luna Red Hibiscus Seed
CHECK PRICE →

How to grow your Hardy Hibiscus 

Now that you know about the different ways to propagate your Hardy Hibiscus plant, the next step is to learn how to grow it correctly to get the expected results.

Let’s start with selecting and preparing the site for your garden.

1. Site selection and preparation 

Selecting the perfect site will help contribute to how well your Hardy Hibiscus plant will turn out to be. Proper preparation also sets it up for success, making it a critical part of the process.

Check out these tips:

  • Hardy Hibiscus is best cultivated in rich soil. So finding a site around a river or wetland may be a great idea. However, some hybrids are not so moisture dependent, so if you live in a location where rivers and wetlands are hard to find, you may be lucky to grow your Hardy Hibiscus successfully.

Generally, find a site in averagely wet soil, and avoid sandy soils as they lack adequate moisture. But, again, this is also an issue you can manage. If you find yourself on a dry site, add compost about 8 inches deep before you plant to enrich the soil.

  • Select a site with a wall facing the south if you are in a cool area, as it helps protect your plant from the destructive wind.
  • Expose your plant to the sun for optimal growth. But, if you are in a very hot area, create some shade, and display them under full sun exposure 6 hours a day only. Note that if they are in the shade for a prolonged period though, their flowers may not bloom properly.
  • Keep the soil moist, and cover their roots with mulch.

2. Light

For maximum growth, expose your Hardy Hibiscus plant to full sun exposure for a minimum of six hours daily.

If you live in a hot climate, create some shade by growing other leafy plants close to your Hardy Hibiscus, or you could select a site with some shade in the afternoon.

Also, choose a location exposed to sunlight if you plant your Hardy Hibiscus indoors, preferably near the window.

3. Water

As discussed earlier, Hardy Hibiscus thrives in a wet, moist place. If it’s on a dry site, water it regularly, but not excessively. You should supply it with about 1 to 2 inches of water every week.

Water it two times a week in summer, and water it every day if you are in a warmer climate.

4. Temperature and humidity 

Your Hardy Hibiscus will grow better under 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. So, place your plants inside before the temperature gets to 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Avoid areas with low humidity, so they don’t get dry.

During winter, place your Hardy Hibiscus in a pebble tray with water when you move them indoors.

5. Fertilizer

Hardy Hibiscus needs the right amount of nutrients to survive, which means you need to feed them regularly with adequate fertilizer.

To do this, you should:

  • Supply your plants with diluted liquid fertilizer once a week. You can also feed them with a slow-release fertilizer thrice a year; early spring, after the early bloom, and mid-summer.
  • Fertilize your soil about four times a year if it’s sandy or less rich soil to maintain a rich nutrient level. But do not over-fertilize. If you do, you may put your soil at risk of imbalances that will be unhealthy for your plants.
  • Consider purchasing a home soil test kit to know your soil’s current levels and learn the right amount of fertilizer it needs.
  • Supply your plants with organic-based liquid fertilizer if your soil is low on phosphorus. But do this only if needed, because excessive phosphorus can damage your plants.
  • Acquire an NPK of 17-5-24, 9-3-13, or 10-4-12 to enrich the soil with low nutrients.

How to care for your Hardy Hibiscus

Hardy Hibiscus plants blossom brilliantly when they receive adequate care. However, they require different maintenance practices at different periods.

Let’s take a look at its best maintenance practices:

Caring for your Hardy Hibiscus plants during winter

If you experience a medium-temperature climate throughout the year, you may find it easy to grow and care for your plants, as they are better off in areas with mild temperatures. But if the temperature in your area is very cold, to the point of overwintering, you should protect your plants with these steps:

  • If you planted your plants in the ground, cover them in thick cloth with a material that can rise in a freezing temperature.
  • If your plant is in a pot indoors, keep it at 55 degrees Fahrenheit, with about four hours of daily sunlight to survive.

Caring for your Hardy Hibiscus during spring 

Hardy Hibiscus plants are slow to grow during spring, so it’s best to be patient with them. Often, the soil temperature would reach about 70 degrees before they sprout. When this happens, fertilize them every fourteen to twenty days.

Pruning

There are specific things to do when pruning your Hardy Hibiscus plants to enable them to look their best.

Here’s what you should do:

  • Trim down dead stems and branches to 8 to 12 inches before you cover them with layers of mulch.
  • Cut off branches that froze during winter.
  • Remove mulch during spring.
  • Trim and shape your Hardy Hibiscus to your taste.
  • When your plant is 15cm, pinch bank its growth tips to help it blossom better. You may damage the flowering process if you pinch back its growth tips too late though, so ensure you pinch as early as you can.
  • After pinching back at 15cm, pinch back its growth tips at 25-30cm again if you notice your plant is growing slowly.
  • Remove dead flower heads regularly to encourage proper blooms. You can do this by sniping the wilted blooms with pruners.

How to protect Hardy Hibiscus plants from pests

The first step to protecting your Hardy Hibiscus is to know the types of pests they are susceptible to and take adequate measures to prevent them from attacks.

Here are the pests to look out for:

Deer

There is a high chance of deer attack if the site is at a location with an influx of deer. Consider creating a deer fence to protect your plants from such attacks.

Mealybugs

Mealybugs are tiny insects that survive by feeding on plants. They grow quickly and can damage your Hardy Hibiscus in a short period if you don’t control them on time. If you notice any plants are infested with mealybugs, isolate them from other plants.

Heavy rainfall cuts down their population. But since you have no control over when it will rain, you may introduce other predatory insects like wasps and lady beetles to the affected plants to reduce their population.

Aphids

Aphids are tiny black, green, or white insects commonly found around Hardy Hibiscus plants. They infest their buds, flowers, and sometimes the stems to sap off their nutrients.

They grow rapidly, and can destroy your plants quickly if you don’t treat them fast enough.

While other predatory insects like ladybugs and crisps can destroy these insects, they don’t get rid of them completely. But an insecticidal spray soap can eliminate them over time if you apply it once a week.

Whiteflies 

Whiteflies feed on the backside of plants’ leaves. They suck plants’ saps and leave honeydew; a sticky substance that causes fungal infections and weakens plants.

It also decreases their photosynthesis, so your plants begin to lose their healthy appearance and turn yellow, which ultimately destroys them when untreated.

Keep whiteflies away from your plants by practicing best maintenance practices that keep them healthy. You can use oil-based insecticides on the foliage for adequate protection.

Additionally, if any of your plants are affected, separate them and destroy them completely to avoid letting them spread.

Thrips

Thrips pierce your plants and sap off their juices, causing them to wither. First, get rid of them by separating them from other plants. Then, introduce wasps and lady beetles to reduce their population.

Spider mites

Spider mites have two body parts and eight legs. They are pretty tiny, and often stay on plants unnoticed for a long time. You may have to use a magnifying glass or shake off a branch of your plant onto a sheet of paper before you see them.

They suck nutrients from plants that wither and damage plants’ foliage completely. Remove spider mites with miticides or a strong outpour of water from a garden hose to eliminate them.

How to protect your Hardy Hibiscus plants from diseases 

Hardy Hibiscus plants can be attacked by different diseases that could cause spots, rust, rot, and other damage to the plant. Let’s discuss the different types of diseases Hardy Hibiscus plants are prone to, and how you can protect your plant from them.

1. Black spots 

Fungi and bacteria are responsible for the black spots on plants’ leaves, which damage their appearance.

Bacteria and fungi grow in damp areas, so finding them around Hardy Hibiscus is no surprise. While there is no specific cure for black spots, you can protect your plants by practicing proper maintenance and growth practices.

For example, when the plants grow fast, they produce fresh leaves that make the affected parts grow out.

2. Yellow leaves

Yellow leaves are caused by many reasons, ranging from inadequate sunlight exposure to insufficient moisture, poor nutrition, unfavorable temperatures, and bugs. It could also be the natural process of aging.

Closely inspect your plants to fish out the cause of the yellow leaves. Check for pests, and consider the type of nutrition, temperature, moisture, and sunlight your plants are exposed to. This will let you identify the actual cause of the yellow leaves to take the right measures.

3. Bacteria leaf spot 

Bacteria leaf spot grows in damp areas, and is spread rapidly through splashing water. They create circles of different colors on leaves. They also reduce plants’ shine and cause them to fall off when in severe damage.

The best way to manage and prevent bacteria leaf spots from your Hardy Hibiscus is to practice effective sanitation. Do this by separating affected plants from others and watering your plants from below to reduce splashing.

4. Hollyhock rust 

Hollyhock rust is a fungal disease that grows on Hardy Hibiscus plants. They produce yellow or orange dots under the leaves and rusty colored spots on the upper surfaces of leaves.

They grow on damp foliage, and can destroy foliages and subsequently damage the plants.

Maintaining adequate sanitation procedures helps to prevent and manage Hollyhock rust. Additionally, ensure proper air circulation among the plants and spray them with horticultural oil before foliages grow.

5. Root rot

Root rot happens when the soil is left dampened for a prolonged period of time. Growing your Hardy Hibiscus on well-draining soil can prevent this disease.

If you grow Hardy Hibiscus indoors, you should consider using a lightweight potting medium to ensure proper drainage and protect the plant from root rot. You will know your Hardy Hibiscus plant is attacked by root rot when the leaves begin to turn yellow, and the roots become brown from white.

Keep your soil moist but not soggy, with a proper watering routine, to prevent root rot. Also, ensure your plants’ pots are not flooded with water and water drains properly from the soil.

6. Powdery mildew

Powdery mildew is a fungal disease that grows on plants on warm days and cool nights towards the end of summer and autumn.

They leave a white velvety coating, which reduces your plants’ beauty and makes them less attractive. Control and prevent powdery mildew by applying fungicides before the symptoms show.

Additionally, water the plants from the soil rather than the foliage to reduce the dampness that attracts mildew.


Picking the best seeds – recommended Hardy Hibiscus seeds 

Now that you know how to grow Hardy Hibiscus, it’s critical to know the best seeds to grow. We know selecting the right seeds is a daunting task, so we’ve compiled the five best Hardy Hibiscus seeds to plant in your garden.

Check them out below:

1. 100 Giant Hibiscus Flower Seeds – Top Pick Seed

Specification

Style: Giant Hardy Hibiscus flower

Weight: 0.317 ounces

Numberof seeds: 100

If you want to grow healthy, Hardy Hibiscus flowers with mixed colors, Giant Hibiscus Flower Seeds are a great pick.

Pros

  • Come with many seeds
  • Have about three different colors
  • Are easy to grow

2. 10 Seeds Pink Purple Blue Hibiscus Flower Runner Up Seed

Specification

Style: Pink, Purple-blue Hardy Hibiscus Flower

Weight: 0.634

Number of seeds: 10

Pink Purple Blue Hibiscus flower adds beauty to your garden and surroundings. They add a fresh feel to nature and make your environment sparkle with color.

Pros

  • Grows in abundance.
  • Offers easy maintenance.

3. Outsidepride Hibiscus Luna Red Flower plant seeds – Best Seeds for a Tropical Feel

They are likely to reach 24 to 36 inches in full maturity and are perfect for zones 5 to 10. They also add a sophisticated tropical feel to your garden.

Specification

Style: Outside Luna Red Hibiscus Seed

Application: 2 to 3 seeds per plant

Outsidepride, Hibiscus Luna Red plants are to be watered regularly for best growth. You can plant them in garden beds or containers with moist soil.

Pros

  • A beautiful addition to your garden
  • Grow to about 24 to 36 inches after maturity

4. 10 Double Pink Yellow Hibiscus Seeds Hardy Flower Garden Exotic Perennial seed – Best Seeds to Brighten Your Garden

Specification

Style: Hardy Hibiscus plant

Weight: 0.176 ounces

Number of seeds: 10

Double Pink Yellow Hibiscus seeds are easy to grow and produce attractive flowers in abundance. Plant them in favorable weather conditions for best results.

Pros

  • Attract good attention
  • Easy to maintain
  • Large size and offer multiple seed growth

5. 250 Tropical Giant Hibiscus Flower Seeds – Top Seeds for a Colorful Garden

Specification

Style: Hardy Hibiscus

Weight: 1.44 ounces

Number of seeds: 250

With the best maintenance, Tropical Giant Hibiscus flower seeds will produce lovely, luscious flowers of various colors to elevate your environment’s appearance.

Pros

  • Comes with numerous seeds that breed abundant flowers
  • Several colors for variety
  • Are easy to grow and maintain

Final thoughts 

Hardy Hibiscus plants are perfect plants to go for if you want to add a tropical appearance to your garden. They are best grown in mild temperatures, moist soil, and adequate sunlight. They also come in different types and species, which we’ve discussed in this article.

Follow this guide to grow your Hardy Hibiscus in the best way possible. Good luck!

FAQs

It’s possible you still have questions about how to grow Hardy Hibiscus after reading this guide, which is why we’ve provided answers to frequently asked questions about growing Hardy Hibiscus in this section.

Find them below:

Is Hardy Hibiscus easy to grow?

Hardy Hibiscus plants are easy to grow when they are in favorable temperature, exposed to regular sunlight, and grown in healthy, moist soil. Although fertilizers may not be necessary when growing your Hardy Hibiscus in good soil, they do help to facilitate its growth.

How fast does Hardy Hibiscus grow?

Hardy Hibiscus grows fast in good temperature, soil, and proper care. They can reach about 7 to 12 feet in three years when all these conditions are checked.

How do you winterize a Hardy Hibiscus?

Winterize a Hardy Hibiscus by trimming off wilted foliage sprouting in the outside soil. Then, wrap the roots with layers of mulch, or use shredded leaves.

How tall does Hardy Hibiscus grow?

Hardy Hibiscus plants grow very fast. They can grow between 3 to 8 feet tall.

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