Hibiscus is a flowering tree plant, and produces showy flowers. Hibiscus trees exists in cold hardy and tropical regions. Leaves of tropical regions are glossy and of cold hardy regions, leaves are not much bright.
This popular landscape shrub creates a bold effect with its medium-textured, glossy dark green leaves and vibrantly-colored, four to eight-inch-wide, showy flowers, produced throughout the year. Cultivars are available with single or double flowers in shades of white, pink, red, yellow, peach, or orange, or combinations of these. Flowers are produced continuously in great abundance, making up for the fact that each flower will last only one or two days. Some selections have variegated foliage and appear to be covered with snow.
Growing best in full sun to dappled shade, Hibiscus appreciates abundant watering and fertilization when newly
planted, but requires little care once established. Plants make attractive specimen plantings when given enough room to allow development of their natural arching form. Planted on three to four-foot centers, they can also be trained into hedges, but shearing often removes the developing flower buds. Instead, train into a less formal hedge with a hand pruner. Since plants flower on new growth, pinching the tips of developing branches in spring and mid-summer will increase flower production. Severe pruning in the summer removes flower buds and will
reduce flowering for a period of time.
Hibiscus is occasionally trained into a small tree with multiple trunks and will grow to about 10 feet tall. A number
of nurseries also offer Hibiscus as a standard with a single, straight trunk three to five feet tall with branches and foliage forming a neat, rounded canopy. Standards are often maintained 8 to 10 feet tall with regular clipping.
A few of the multitude of available cultivars include: ‘HulaGirl’, large single, canary yellow flowers with a red eye;
‘President’, single, six to seven-inch-wide intense red flowers with a pink throat; ‘Sundown’, double salmon orange flowers; and ‘Seminole Pink’, dark green foliage and bright pink blooms.
How to propagate Hibiscus Trees
Propagation is by cuttings but some selections are grafted onto nematode-resistant rootstock. Although usually strong and easy to grow, Hibiscus can be bothered by aphids which accumulate at the tips of stems, causing new growth to be misshapen. Aphids may cover the leaves with sticky honeydew. The insects can be dislodged with
high pressure water sprays from the garden hose or controlled by pinching off the part of the twig with the insects. Over-fertilizing increases aphid infestations.
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