The Q&A Archives: Hibiscus Dropping Buds

Question: My tropical hibiscus was purchased for me on Mothers' Day of this year. I keep it outdoors and it is still in the pot. It gets full afternoon sun. It had a period of having nice flowers but lately it has been dropping the new buds way before they are ready to bloom. What do you think the problem is? Thanks.

Answer: When buds drop before opening, it could indicate less than perfect growing conditions, or a fungal disease. Since the plant is relatively new, I'd suspect it's not getting the degree of humidity it prefers. Try sprinkling the plant early each morning, and watering deeply once or twice a week to keep the soil moist but not soggy wet. If blooming doesn't improve in a few weeks, try shading it slightly from very hot afternoon sunshine. If, after all your adjustments, it's still dropping buds, it may have a fungal disease. (Look for black dots or spots on the withered buds.) Hope your plant straightens up and blooms for you!

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