The Q&A Archives: Hibiscus Plant & outdoor plants & trees

Question: How to revive my hibiscus plant that was planted by the previous owner. We had frost and I don't know if the flowers will grow back after a hard freeze. The leaves look dead. Most of the leaves are yellowish brown. Please help. I don't know much about taking care of outdoor plants and bushes. My tree and palm trees are also brownish yellow.

Answer: It seems that everyone in Florida has frost damaged plants this year so you have lots of company! The best thing to do for your plants is to prune off the obviously dead and damaged plant parts to make way for healthy new growth. You can prune your hibiscus back by as much as one third without harming it. Prune everything back to healthy stems and branches. Later this spring it will grow new stems and flowers. You can feed your hibiscus when it begins to show new growth. Use either a liquid or time release granular fertilizer such as a 20-20-20. Hibiscus is evergreen and as such does eventually lose its older leaves which turn yellow and fall off the plant. These are quickly replaced by healthy new leaves. So, don't let occasional yellowing leaves alarm you. As long as the plant looks healthy overall and is putting out new growth, it is fine. Same with your palms - prune to remove the dead and dying fronds and you should see new fronds develop later in the season when the weather is consistently warm. Best wishes with your landscape!

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