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The Hibiscus Flower - Photos and Information
Hibiscus - A Wonderful Tropical Flower
Hibiscus are wonderful and cheery flowers to have around. I have grown them before, and really enjoyed them in my garden. In fact, they were beautiful little hibiscus "trees" with braided "trunks". I purchased and planted a few of them for my backyard. I found out a bit later, they wouldn't survive the winter, and they did not. Needless to say, I have learned a lot since that time! I still love them, and if I ever live in a place where they can survive the winters, I will plant them again.
Some Features of Hibiscus
Sometimes hibiscus is referred to as shrubby mallow. There is another Rose Mallow, which is a bit more cold hardy and can be grown and return each year. The general hibiscus plant is the one I am referring to in this hub. This plant is a late, but strong summer blooming flower that is very eyecatching. They often have huge, saucer shaped blooms that have quite the tropical flair to them.
The blooming period generally is from July through September, and I simply love the show they put on. It is as if the strong and humid heat doesn't phase them, and in fact they love it. The blooms range in colors from purple, pink, blue, white, red, yellows, and coral colors, and more. Sometimes, you can see multicolored blooms with two colors in them. They are gorgeous!
One of the popular varieties I have heard of are the Hamabo, which has a white flower with a crimson red colored center. Another favorite hibiscus is the Woodbridge, which has a beautiful rose pink color with a dark center. Bluebird is a violet blue colored variety, with a white center.
What Kind of Site is Best for Hibiscus?
Hibiscus like to have full sun, and the more the better. They flower the most in full sun, and do not care for colder windy weather. It is recommended they be sheltered from colder wind if possible. If you have a hibiscus in a somewhat shady spot, and it doesn't bloom prolifically, move it to a sunny location and watch the change in its flowering habit.
Hibiscus like well drained, fertile, and somewhat sandy soil. It likes a sandy loam, but can tolerate even poorer soils, which is good to know. If you do apply any well rotted organic matter, it will really appreciate that.
Feeding your Hibiscus
For newly planted hibiscus in the spring or summer, make sure to water regularly until the plant is established. They like to be fed an all purpose plant food, though I have fed my hibiscus flower food that encourages blooms and it liked that also. It is recommended to try blood or bone meal in the spring and again in mid summer time. They like miracle grow as well. I like to use the diluted in water formulas for blooms.
You can prune back your hibiscus to about half their height in the spring. If there happens to be any frost damage done to the plants, prune back that part also. Sometimes the shoots will become frost damaged, and if they are, the spring is the best time to cut those back as well.
Some of the recommended varieties of hibiscus are, Bluebird, William R. Smith, Brendon Springs, Woodbridge, Hamabo, Meehanii, Lady Stanley, and Lenny.