Ask a Question forum: Moving hibiscus inside for the winter

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Name: NancyB
Minnesota (Zone 4b)
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nben
Oct 22, 2016 7:04 PM CST
A friend has had a potted hibiscus on his deck all summer in our Zone 4 area and it has been doing quite well. He'd like to move it inside for the winter, and asked what the procedure would be -- should he prune? should he feed? how often should he water? I have never grown hibiscus, and was hoping some of the experts here would be able to give me some advice I can pass along to him.
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Name: Bob
Vernon N.J. (Zone 6a)
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NJBob
Oct 22, 2016 8:06 PM CST
I'm no expert with them but have kept them inside a few Winters. I have not pruned them, just bring them into a sunny location and water the same as my house plants which is about every week and a half to 2 weeks. If you have forced air heat plants might dry out quicker. I do not feed my plants during the Winter, I restart in early Spring. Since they keep flowering indoors for awhile put them in a place you do not mind the flowers falling all the time, they can make a mess.
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Oct 22, 2016 8:15 PM CST
I've done the same thing.I try to get rid of all bugs before taking them inside. I water about every 2 weeks, no food til Spring, and try to keep the flowers picked up. They can be messy.
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[Last edited by plantmanager - Oct 22, 2016 8:15 PM (+)]
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Name: Jay
Nederland, Texas (Zone 9a)
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Horntoad
Oct 22, 2016 8:47 PM CST
I think it's important to ask, do you know if it's a Tropical or Hardy Hibiscus? When people say Hibiscus we tend to assume it's Tropical, but Hardy Hibiscus have become very popular so it's important to know which one you have. The care would be completely different.
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Oct 22, 2016 9:45 PM CST
Hardy Hibiscus lose their leaves and go dormant in the winter so need minimal care and a cool place to stay.

Tropical Hibiscus don't go dormant and often bloom sporatically all winter. They need a warm, sunny spot to spend the winter.

Neither should be pruned in the fall - do all your pruning in the spring when they start actively growing again.
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Name: Anna Z.
Monroe, WI
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AnnaZ
Oct 23, 2016 7:21 AM CST
I prune all the hibiscus severely when I take them into the greenhouse. It has not hampered any growth for the next season.
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bluepoppy
Oct 23, 2016 9:17 AM CST
I have found even the tropical loose a lot of leaves when moved inside for the winte.r
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Critters Allowed Region: Arizona Xeriscape Greenhouse Annuals
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plantmanager
Oct 23, 2016 10:38 AM CST
AnnaZ said:I prune all the hibiscus severely when I take them into the greenhouse. It has not hampered any growth for the next season.


I just pruned my tropical hibiscus down to go into the house. They take up too much space in the greenhouse. Mine grow well in the house during the winter, and do bloom.

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Name: NancyB
Minnesota (Zone 4b)
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nben
Oct 23, 2016 10:59 AM CST
Thank you so much, everyone! I really appreciate all the info. I believe it's a Tropical Hibiscus, as opposed to Hardy, but I will check. And I'll pass along all your comments. Thank You!
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