Hibiscus forum: Hibiscus Watering

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Name: Mike
Anaheim Hills, CA (Zone 10a)
Plumerias
SoCalDawg
Aug 13, 2013 10:07 PM CST
Please help. I bought my only hibiscus from HD about 3 weeks ago and I've read that you should water about every 2 days or so. Well, mine needs to be watered every single day or all the leaves wilt!

It hasnt been over 85* here and I know its grown in Hawaii, so what gives?

"Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it."
- Russel Baker
Name: Hetty
Sunny Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Plumerias Photo Contest Winner: 2015 Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator Region: Florida Cat Lover Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
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Dutchlady1
Aug 14, 2013 3:46 AM CST
Your climate is pretty dry. Also a potted plant needs watering more often than one that is mature and in-ground. Could that be the problem?
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Aug 14, 2013 6:01 AM CST
I agree If your plant is in a pot, go ahead and remove it and see if it is root-bound. Ken
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
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Xeramtheum
Aug 14, 2013 6:14 AM CST
I have all my Tropical Hibiscus in pots and they get watered pretty much every day with no problems .. I don't recall ever killing one with too much water. If it is root-bound then watering every day is a must.
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Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Aug 14, 2013 7:56 AM CST
Try to not let the leaves wilt, eve if it means watering twice a day. Wilting will cause the plant's blooms to shut down. You'll notice it stops blooming. That's because it's not getting enough water. I have quite a few hibiscus in pots. We're experiencing temps over 100 each day. I have very few blooms, but they will "pick up" again late Sept. If you only water once a day, water that pot twice. I mean water it, let the water run through while you water something else, then re-water that pot again. The first water will run through and wet the soil. The second watering will catch the roots instead of just running through. Does that make sense?
Name: Mike
Anaheim Hills, CA (Zone 10a)
Plumerias
SoCalDawg
Aug 14, 2013 8:50 PM CST
It makes perfect sense, Sandi. Thank you! That would explain why I've only gotten 3 blooms.

Hetty, Dawg and Anne thanks to you as well.

Now, where did I leave that hose???

"Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it."
- Russel Baker
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Aug 15, 2013 6:42 AM CST
Mike, did you pull the root-ball out of the pot and see whether the plant was root-bound? If the roots are circling the pot again and again, and there are now more roots than there is soil, you need to repot the plant(s) in a larger pot. Before re-potting, be sure you loosen some of the root mass so that it will not continue growing in a circle. Hibiscus are not only heavy water users but are heavy feeders. The larger the pot the better. Generally they are more accustomed to be found in the landscape, rather than potted because of those two factors alone. Ken
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Hetty
Sunny Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Plumerias Photo Contest Winner: 2015 Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator Region: Florida Cat Lover Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
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Dutchlady1
Aug 15, 2013 8:29 AM CST
I agree
Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Aug 15, 2013 9:59 AM CST
Mike, I looked up your average temps in Anaheim. I envy you! You can certainly plant your hibiscus in the ground without worrying about freezes. We don't have that luxury. I do have some planted in the beds, but I cut them back and cover them in winter. I have to mention that we live on a limestone outcropping that sucks the water right out of the little bit of soil I've amended. Hence, the pots work best for me.

Yesterday it was 107° here. We were expecting rain, so I held off watering. 'Didn't rain, so I was out watering early this morning. We are under restrictions and can only water with sprinklers one day a week (and then, only between midnight and 10 AM and 7 PM to midnight). Otherwise, watering can only be done by hand. It's nearly a full time job in mid-summer.

I wanted to show you the fertilizer I use. I've had really good results with it. I'm sure there are plenty of others out there, but it's the numbers that are important to me. I was using 20-20-20 and it is okay for general fertilizing, but when I switched to a hibiscus fertilizer, they really took off.

The second photo is a snip of Prom Girl that I stuck in a vase-sized pot and forgot about. Not sure if the bees pollinated it or not, but Prom Girl is a single and this is either a double bloom or deformed (in a good way). Hibiscus can surprise you!
Thumb of 2013-08-15/Bubbles/a694f9



Thumb of 2013-08-15/Bubbles/145709

Name: Mike
Anaheim Hills, CA (Zone 10a)
Plumerias
SoCalDawg
Aug 15, 2013 7:46 PM CST
Sandi,
Thank you for passing that along. To be honest, I hadn't even thought about fertilizer because I've been told that doing so isn't good so late in the growing season. I'm getting a kick out of how much I'm learning! And most of it comes from all of you experts, so thank you! My black thumb is starting to lighten up a little.
In terms of the weather, I feel for you! I was stationed at Dyess AFB in Abilene for almost 5 years, and don't miss it!

Dawg, I haven't checked the root ball on this but I will this weekend or maybe tomorrow evening. I'll keep you "posted"..no pun intended.

"Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it."
- Russel Baker
Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Aug 15, 2013 9:20 PM CST
I just thought your growing season was like ours, and you could still expect flowering through October like us.

We just had a heck of a rain storm pass through. Weather guy said we had 300 lightning strikes in less than fifteen minutes! I have pumerias laying down all over the yard. I'll gladly pick them up tomorrow since we had such a good rain. Just sprinkling now and about gone.

Edited to add: We were stationed at Hickam AFB, Hawaii for three years and I miss it terribly!
[Last edited by Bubbles - Aug 15, 2013 9:23 PM (+)]
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