Hibiscus Trees - Knowledgebase Question

Anahiem Hills, CA
Avatar for djeller
Question by djeller
September 4, 2002
I planted five Hibiscus trees in late July of this year and they appear to be doing fine. The trees are sprouting new growth but the buds are falling off before blooming. Is this normal for recently planted trees? Also, everyday three to five leaves on each tree turn yellow. Is this normal or a result of over or under watering of the tree? The trees get a good 5 minute soaking every three days.

Thanks for your help.

Answer from NGA
September 4, 2002
Hibiscus syriacus, or Rose-of-Sharon, is an upright, dense shrub, growing 10' high and 6' wide. These plants can be trained into a tree form and I suspect this is what you're growing. Because they were recently transplanted, the plants may be under stress and are dropping buds in an attempt to redirect energy into adjusting to their new homes. As soon as the root systems are established they should flower normally. Yellowing leaves isn't unusual at this time of year. Your plants are deciduous and will eventually drop all their leaves, but new leaves will appear next spring. Lightly watering every few days isn't a healthy habit for your new plants. They prefer infrequent deep soakings. Build basins around the trunks of your plants and flood the basins once or twice a week, depending upon weather. In the fall and winter you won't need to water as often as you will in the spring and summer - let the weather be your guide. When you do water, apply slowly to allow the moisture to trickle down and wet the entire root mass. Then allow the top inch or two of soil dry out before watering again. Good luck with your new plants!

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