The Q&A Archives: Overwintering Hardy Hibiscus In a Pot

Question: I would like to know what is the best way to overwinter my hardy hibiscus. I planted it in the ground last year and thought that it was dead because I didn't see any new growth this spring. Well, low and behold as I was digging it out of the ground I noticed roots that looked very much alive. I then planted it in a large pot. It is thriving quite well this summer and has buds beginning to form. Last year when it was in the ground, I put cedar mulch over it and I guess it survived. Now with it being in a pot, how will I make sure it will survive the cold winters of New York. Should I bring the pot in the garage? Do I have to wrap the container it is in with anything special? Does it require any water over the winter. Oh I so hope you will have the answers as I'm hoping to get those beautiful large red blooms each year!! Thank you.

Answer: Your hardy hibiscus will be happier outdoors this winter than indoors, even in a garage. Now that you have it in a pot, enjoy it for the summer months and in the fall, sink the pot into the ground and mulch over it just as you did last winter. As the root system grows and matures it will send out new shoots much earlier in the season. Or, this fall, plant it back into the ground, knowing that it will survive your winters if mulched over the top.

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