Hibiscus | Hibiscus rosa-sinensis

Hibiscuses are members of the Malvaceae family, native to tropical Asia. Even when grown in containers they can reach a height of 3 m (10 ft). The large single flowers come in many colours and are borne singly until autumn, standing out beautifully against the glossy dark green leaves.

The plants thrive in a sunny, sheltered position and dislike being disturbed. In summer they need plenty of water – preferably soft water -and an application of a compound fertilizer at least once a week. If the soil dries out the flower buds will drop. In winter, these rather tender plants should be moved before the first frosts to a bright place where the temperature is between 10-15° C (50-59° F). If they are kept in a conservatory where the temperature fluctuates around 20° C (68° F), they will continue flowering for a little longer. It can be propagated from semi-ripe cuttings taken in spring and summer. Young plants should be pinched out regularly and older specimens can be thinned in spring or cut into the required shape. They are prone to aphids.

16. August 2014 by Dave Pinkney
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