“Flamboyant” is the word most used to describe hibiscus, and for good reason. This low maintenance plant comes in every size and color imaginable. While it was originally found only in tropical climes it can now be grown in northern climates up to zone four (see zone map in Resources). Whether you plant it as a specimen, on the patio or in a hedge, hibiscus will thrive with the right conditions.
Consider your climate when you purchase a hibiscus plant. While tropical hibiscus can’t survive a hard frost, they can be grown on a patio and brought inside during winter months. Check the plant tag when you buy your hibiscus to be sure it’s the right type for the purpose you have in mind, as hibiscus size can vary from a 2-foot shrub to an 8-foot tree.
Plant your hibiscus in a well-drained, sunny area that is sheltered from hard wind. While hibiscuses like a bit of shade, over eight hours of shade a day will limit the blooms and growth. Hibiscus doesn’t grow well in sand or clay, but these soils can be enriched with top soil and organic matter to make them more viable.
Dig a hole that is twice as wide and deep as the pot your hibiscus came in. Remove the plant from the pot and gently untangle the roots before placing it in the hole.
Mix organic matter such as compost into the soil you cover your hibiscus with. Press the soil firmly around the base.
Water your transplant well to set the roots into the soil and remove any air that has accumulated in the soil. To maintain your hibiscus, water it heavily twice a week. Do not leave water standing at the base of the plant.