The flowering plant hibiscus (Hibiscus) is a member of the Malvaceae family. This genus unites about 300 species, among which there are shrubs, evergreen and deciduous trees, as well as herbaceous plants. In natural conditions, they can be found in the tropical and subtropical regions of the Old and New Worlds. In open ground in regions with a temperate climate, only trifoliate and Syrian hibiscus are cultivated, as well as garden hibiscus (hybrid hibiscus), which was bred by breeders in the forties and fifties of the twentieth century on the basis of North American hibiscus: bright red, marsh and armed. All forms of garden hibiscus are highly resistant to frost. The widely known Chinese hibiscus (Chinese rose) in mid-latitudes is cultivated only in greenhouses or at home, but in the summer it is advisable to transfer it to fresh air.
Garden hibiscus is represented by shrubs, trees and herbaceous plants. For example, tree hibiscus (Syrian rose) is cultivated in the garden as a standard tree or shrub, the height of which can reach up to 150 cm.All herbaceous hibiscus are varieties of hybrid hibiscus, among them there are annuals, but perennials are the most popular among gardeners. Despite the fact that there are many different forms of such a plant, they all have common features. Petiole leaf plates are incised to a greater or lesser extent. Large saturated color flowers can be simple or double. They can be painted in different colors, for example: yellow, dark red, cyan, purple, white, crimson, lilac or violet. There are varieties with an eye in a contrasting color or with edging along the edge of the petals. The fruit is a five-leaf box containing seeds. Today, in addition to garden species, there are about 500 varieties and forms of hibiscus.
Syrian hibiscus: planting and care
Before you start planting hibiscus, you need to choose the most suitable place for this. From this, as well as how well you take care of the plant, depends on how long it will decorate your garden. If everything is done correctly, then the bush in the same place can grow for about 20 years.
Planting hibiscus seedlings in open ground is carried out in the spring, after the spring return frosts are left behind. In this case, during the summer, the bush will be able to take root well and acclimatize in a new place. It is best to choose a well-lit place for planting crops that is reliably protected from the wind. The soil should be light, rich in nutrients and well-drained, roses still grow well in such soil. If desired, hibiscus can even be planted among the roses.
For tree-shaped planting, the planting hole should be 2 times larger than the volume of the seedling root system. After the pit is ready, a layer of drainage from pieces of brick should be laid on its bottom, its thickness should be about 15 centimeters. From above it is covered with a layer of sand 10 centimeters thick, then a fifteen centimeter layer of compost and again a ten centimeter layer of sand. To fill up the planting hole, you will need a soil mixture; for its preparation, the soil pulled from the hole, sand and peat are combined in a ratio of 2: 1: 4. Carefully place the seedling in the hole, with the root collar only slightly submerged in the soil. Then the pit is covered with soil mixture that you prepared in advance.
After the tree is planted, it must be well spud, as a result, a rather deep hole for water should be formed around it. Pour water into this recess and wait until it is completely absorbed into the soil. Then fill the hole with soil so that the trunk circle is even and level with the surface of the site.
If you need to plant a seedling in open ground in the autumn, then the surface of the trunk circle should be covered with a layer of mulch, and the plant itself should be tied with spruce branches.
Garden hibiscus grown in open soil is not difficult to care for. After young green stems appear on the bush, all dried old shoots are cut off from it. Systematically loosen the soil around the tree, pull up weeds in a timely manner, and also prevent the bush from thickening.
During the growing season (June – September), the plant is regularly fed once every 2 weeks, for this, a fertilizer with an increased content of phosphorus and nitrogen is used. And in the autumn, during the preparation of the bush for wintering, in addition to phosphorus fertilizers, it is also fed with potash fertilizers.
After the flower blooms, it will live for only 24 hours, and then it will wither. However, if the bush is well cared for, it will bloom very luxuriantly, and immediately after one flower withers, another will bloom. In order for the bush to always be neat, it is necessary to regularly pick off the flowers that have begun to fade.
In order for a flower to grow and develop normally, it must be watered in a timely manner, special attention is paid to this in hot weather. However, watering is carried out only when the soil surface near the bush is completely dry. In the event that there is a prolonged dry period, watering the hibiscus is carried out every day.
The culture needs sanitary, as well as formative pruning, with which you can give the desired shape to the bush. Most often it is shaped like a tree, but this will take a lot of time and patience. In a newly planted young bush, the branches are shortened to 2 or 3 buds, while a well-developed trunk does not need to be touched. In subsequent years, in the last winter weeks, trim the side shoots to 1–2 buds, and the stem to 5–6 buds. After the height of the stem suits you, start forming the crown of the plant, for this, the strong shoots are shortened by several buds. Cut out all the undergrowth and trim off the top of the stem.
In the first spring weeks, before the sap flow begins, sanitary pruning of hibiscus is carried out. To do this, cut out all affected by the disease, old, growing inside the bush and weak shoots, then shorten last year's growth by 1/3 part, this helps to stimulate the laying of new flower buds. The main rule in pruning hibiscus, the more the bush is trimmed, the more young shoots it will grow, and this will lead to more lush flowering.
If you need to rejuvenate the plant, then for this, all the dried old branches are cut off from it, and the remaining stems inside the bush are shortened by 2/3. In order to make the shape of the bush more attractive, it is recommended to cut branches around the main stem to different heights.
Sometimes it happens that an adult hibiscus bush has to be transplanted to a new place. This is done in early spring after all the shoots are shortened by ½ part and always before the bush blooms. The transplant is carried out in the same way as the landing (see above).
After the plant is transplanted, it is well watered. In the future, he is looked after in the same way as other adult hibiscus. A year later, flowers will appear on the bush. When transplanting a hybrid hibiscus, you can divide the rhizome if desired.
Syrian Hibiscus - My Care Secrets
Even a novice gardener can propagate garden hibiscus, since there is nothing difficult in this. Syrian hibiscus (garden) is most often propagated by seed and cuttings, but it can also be done by grafting and layering. Hybrid hibiscus can be propagated by grafting, dividing the bush, and even green cuttings.
Sowing hibiscus seeds is carried out in January – March. Before starting sowing, the seed is poured with a solution of dark pink potassium permanganate for 30 minutes. Then they are taken out and immersed in Epin's solution for 24 hours so that the seeds are only slightly covered with it. Then the seeds are sown. For this, a container is used, which is filled with a soil mixture consisting of sand and peat. From above it is covered with glass and removed to a warm place (from 25 to 27 degrees). If possible, arrange bottom heating for crops. They will also need systematic ventilation and removal of condensate from the shelter. Watering is carried out as needed.
After the seedlings have formed the first true leaf plates, they will need to be cut into individual pots. Make sure that the plant does not stretch out. This can happen due to excessively poor lighting, so it is recommended that the seedlings arrange additional lighting.
Planting seedlings in open soil is carried out in mid-May. Powerful bushes are immediately planted in a permanent place. The same seedlings, which are very weak, are recommended to be planted on a training bed for growing, while the distance between the bushes should be at least 50 cm. Unlike hybrid hibiscus, garden hibiscus can reproduce by self-seeding.
Cuttings are harvested in the summer. To do this, cut off the shoot with 2-3 internodes. Treat the bottom sections of the lengths with a growth promoter. After that, they are planted in a peat soil mixture in a greenhouse for rooting, they need bottom heating. After 4 weeks, roots should grow on the cuttings, after which they are transplanted into separate containers, which are filled with a soil mixture consisting of peat, sand, turf and leafy soil (1: 1: 1: 1). Water the bushes systematically, and after they have grown young shoots, pinch them, which stimulates tillering.
After the bush grows up and gets stronger, it can be planted in the garden. With proper and good care, hibiscus will begin to bloom in the first year after planting it in open soil. Some gardeners manage to root cuttings in a container of water.
Syrian hibiscus. Wintering
Hibiscus is quite resistant to pests and diseases. However, if during a prolonged drought it is not watered for a long time, then aphids, spider mites, thrips and whiteflies can settle on it. In order to get rid of harmful insects, you will need to spray the bushes with a solution of an insecticidal preparation 2 times with an interval of 7-10 days, for example: Fitoverma, Karbofos, Actellika or Inta-vira.
Outdoor hibiscus is most commonly affected by chlorosis. In a sick bush, the lower leaf plates fly around, while young leaves grow immediately of a pale yellow hue. This can happen due to the fact that the soil contains very little iron and nitrogen, therefore it is recommended to add iron chelate to the water during irrigation. At the same time, in the spring, it is imperative to apply a complex mineral fertilizer to the soil, which includes nitrogen.
Perennial hybrid hibiscus are all highly frost-resistant. They can be cultivated throughout Ukraine, while in Russia such a plant can be grown only in regions located south of Moscow, and then they must be covered for the winter.
The aerial part of the bush that has died out in the autumn is cut off almost to the surface of the site. Then the remaining segment is spud up high with soil. If winter is expected to be too frosty or with little snow, then cover the surface of the trunk circle with a layer of mulch (flying around with dry foliage or sawdust). With the onset of spring, the hybrid hibiscus will grow young stems, and many spectacular flowers will appear on them.
But what if you are growing Syrian (garden) hibiscus? When cultivated in mid-latitudes, the bush must be covered for the winter, especially if you have a terry variety. In regions with very cold climates for the winter, the bush can be removed from the ground, placed in a large pot or container and removed to any cool room (for example, in a basement), where it will stay until spring. Then it is planted again in the garden.
If your plant hibernates in open ground, then in 2-3 ten days of November, after the air temperature stays at a level from minus 5 to minus 10 degrees, a frame must be made around the bush, spunbond, lutrasil or agrotex is pulled over it.If in the region where you live in winter the air temperature does not drop below minus 15 degrees, then nothing threatens the bushes protected in this way. Instead of a covering material that does not allow air to pass through well, which can cause the plant to rot, it is better to use spruce branches, which are able to accumulate snow on themselves and prevent the hibiscus from overheating or rotting. To begin with, tie the bush with a rope, and put a sack bag on top of it, and then put spruce branches in 3 layers, like a hut. But it should be borne in mind that a rodent can climb into such a structure, which will gnaw the bark on the plant, and it will die. To protect the bush from such a pest, you need to put mousetraps or baits near it (wheat poisoned with poison from rodents).
Syrian hibiscus. Preparing for winter.
As mentioned above, Syrian hibiscus, as well as its varieties, are most often cultivated in the garden. But other types of such plants and their various varieties are grown in open ground.
The homeland of such a plant is not Syria, but China. Under natural conditions, this species is a deciduous shrub, which can reach a height of 5-6 meters. The shape of the rich green leaf plates is ovoid, and their length is up to 10 centimeters. During flowering, single flowers bloom, which can be painted in different colors. Gardeners cultivate hibiscus with both simple and double flowers, while the shape of the plant is both standard and bush. The best varieties:
The homeland of this species is North and Central Africa. However, today it is widely cultivated in all areas of irrigated agriculture. The hibiscus has a taproot, as well as a branched straight stem, the height of which is about 0.8 m. On the surface of the alternately located tripartite leaf plates, there is pubescence, they also have a petiole. The pale yellow flowers reach about 40 mm in diameter, with a dark red center. This species has one characteristic feature: its flowers open in the morning, and close in the afternoon. The flowering period of such a plant is more than 30 days. The fact is that new buds are formed in the axils of each leaf plate, and if the bush grows in favorable conditions, then the formation of flowers will occur every day.
In addition to these species, which can be found in the garden and in natural conditions, gardeners also cultivate hybrid hibiscus, as well as its varieties. It was already mentioned above that breeders obtained this plant by crossing 3 North American species, namely: bright red, armed (holly) and marsh hibiscus. Hybrid hibiscus are herbaceous perennial plants that produce very large and beautiful flowers during flowering. Popular varieties:
There are superstitions associated with hibiscus, which claim that such a flower can only bring misfortune to its owner, and also that when it blooms, soon someone close to its owner dies. However, all these superstitions are associated with the Chinese hibiscus, or the Chinese rose. Not a single sign has yet been invented about the hibiscus grown in the garden, so you can grow it on your site without fear.
Syrian hibiscus, or as it is also called, garden - unpretentious and at the same time attractive plant belonging to the mallow family.
Despite the fact that the plant is tropical, with proper care for the garden hibiscus, it perfectly takes root in our climatic conditions.
The indescribable beauty of flowers is best seen. Plants in the middle lane grow up to one and a half meters. By trimming, you can give the plant the desired shape.
Syrian hibiscus Ardens (purple). The bush is compact, always double, with inflorescences ranging from pink to dark lilac flowers. Grows well in Ukraine with minimal cover.
Syrian hibiscus Rosentus Plantus is a deciduous shrub. Large toothed curly leaves. Shelter is required in winter. It is also cultivated as a houseplant.
Hibiscus Syrian Blue Chiffon is a continuation of the "chiffon" series. This variety is distinguished by a pure blue color, turning into blue without lilac impurities. There are few such flowers in nature. Blue Chiffon is the novelty of the season.
The variety of colors and shades of hibiscus makes it a desirable decoration for any garden.
Garden hibiscus propagates, most often, by cuttings and seeds.
Garden and tree-like hibiscus propagates very simply: by seeds, cuttings, grafting. Cuttings begin in the summer, before flowering. For this, shoots with several internodes are cut from the bush, the ends are dusted with a root formation stimulator and planted in a greenhouse with peat soil.
Rooting lasts about a month, when the shoots start to grow, they are transplanted into pots with a nutritious substrate and grow there until a bush is formed. After that, it is possible to plant plants in the open field.
The water method is also suitable for cuttings, but when using it, most of the leaves are removed from the shoot, leaving 3-4, large ones are cut by a third to reduce evaporation. An activated carbon tablet is added to the water so that there is no decay. By cuttings, hibiscus usually reproduces successfully.
For propagation by cuttings, cuttings with three nodes are cut, the lower part is treated with a growth stimulator. Then they are transplanted into peat soil with a temperature of about 26 degrees, preferably in a greenhouse.
After the cuttings take root, they are planted and pinched, to create a shape in separate containers with prepared soil, peat, turf, leaf and sand, everything is taken in equal parts.
And as soon as a compact bush grows, you can plant it on the site. Provided proper care, flowering will begin in the first year. You can also root the cuttings in water.
How to propagate tree hibiscus? Seeds and cuttings. Both methods are quite effective for our climate. There are no special tips on how to grow this bush from seeds. This is not a problem for gardeners.
A bush that has grown from a cutting can bloom in the very first summer. Use old shoots to get cuttings. Place them in a container of water and wait for the roots to appear. Place the cuttings in pots with soil, and plant them in the right place in the spring.
If you follow all of the above tips, then Syrian hibiscus will delight you with white, yellow or pink flowers from year to year for a very long time.