Friday, February 7, 2014

The Frozen Hibiscus

The hibiscus is a large deciduous shrub or small tree depending on how it is pruned.  The tree or bush with its dark shiny leaves may grow to 15 feet in frost free areas.  It likes full sun and well-drained soil.  Once established it requires  very little care.  The blooms are trumpet shaped and come in a variety of color and color combinations.

A Frozen Hibiscus
I had a beauty of a hibiscus at the corner of the porch and I often thought about pruning it but never did.  It grew into a tall bush.  Now I know that I could have pruned it into a single stemmed small tree but I let it grow any way it wanted and it turned into a nice shape with lots of huge red flowers that lasted for a long time.

I had hoped that this tropical bush was well protected near the house and under a large pine tree's branches but the temperature went below 30 degrees F for an extended time.  The hibiscus dropped its flowers and turned brown in a few days.  It was recommended that I leave it alone to give it a chance to recover.  Maybe it was still alive under all those brown leaves.  What to do now?

I have left it alone for several weeks and I have not seen any greenery.  It is recommended that the hibiscus be pruned in early spring under normal circumstances but this winter has been far from normal.  It is misting this morning so I will wait for a sunny day to do any pruning.  Then I will find out the extent of the freeze damage.  Hopefully, the roots are still alive and it will grow again.

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