The Pink Hibiscus How-To: Essential Growing Tips for Syriacus

With its alluring and delicate flowers, the pink hibiscus is an excellent focal plant. It blooms from late summer into early fall, adding color to waning gardens. Pink hibiscus produces plenty of blooms throughout the season, and the petals can also be used to make soothing herbal tea. Here, I’ll take you through everything you need about growing and caring for pink hibiscus syriacus at home. 

How To Grow Pink Hibiscus (Syriacus)

Growing Pink Hibiscus – The Essentials: 

Botanical Name:Hibiscus syriacus
Also Known As:Rose of Sharon, Korean Rose, Rose Mallow
Hardiness Zones:USDA Zones 5 to 9
Flowering Months:July through to October
Growing Difficulty:Easy to grow, good for beginners
Type of Plant:Hardy deciduous perennial shrub
Light Requirements:Grows well in full sun, will need some wind shelter
Temp & Humidity:Prefers temperatures between 60 and 85F and moderate humidity
Watering Needs:Water weekly during dry summers and avoid watering in winter
Soil Preferences:Moist, but well-draining acidic soil with rich nutrients. Can still survive in poorer soils
Feeding:Feed with a slow-release fertilizer during spring and summer
Growth Expectations:Can reach between 8 and 12 feet tall and 4 to 6 feet wide
Toxicity:Non-toxic for humans and pets

Suitable USDA Growing Zones for Pink Hibiscus 

Pink hibiscus grows well in USDA-recommended hardiness growing zones 5 to 9. These areas include most of the US except for northern states. Pink hibiscus can tolerate colder temperatures than tropical varieties.

Blooming & Flowering 

A cluster of pink hibiscus flowers in bloom

Pink hibiscus is a perennial flowering plant that typically blooms from July into October. This relatively late flowering season helps to maintain a show of garden color even when other flowers are fading. The leaves begin to emerge in late May. 

Pink Hibiscus Growth Expectations 

Mature pink hibiscus plants can reach up to 12 feet tall and 6 feet wide. Most plants will tower anywhere between 8 and 10 feet on average. 

Best Companion Plants for Pink Hibiscus 

Thanks to their height, pink hibiscus make excellent backing shrubs for borders containing plants such as lavender or lilies. Hibiscus can also form part of a flowering hedgerow with other shrubs like hydrangeas, lilacs, or viburnums.

How to Grow Pink Hibiscus

A single Pink Hibiscus flowers during the growing season

Is Pink Hibiscus Considered Easy to Grow? 

Pink hibiscus is a straightforward shrub to grow in most gardens and even for beginners. These plants thrive in moist soil with good drainage. They require moderate pruning after their final blooms. 

Growing pink hibiscus is a simple way to bring some late-summer color into the garden. Pink hibiscus also grows well in containers or as part of a hedgerow. 

What Are the Best Locations to Plant Pink Hibiscus? 

A large collection of Pink Hibiscus plants flowering in a sun filled garden

Pink hibiscus thrives in a sunny position that provides some shelter from the wind. This area should also have well-draining soil that can still be kept slightly moist. Pink hibiscus is quite hardy and can tolerate colder locations or poorer soils if necessary. 

The color and structure of the pink hibiscus mesh well with ornamental borders or groups of tropical plants. It also fits in well with courtyard gardens in a container. 

What Are the Best Times of Year to Plant Pink Hibiscus? 

Pink hibiscus should ideally be planted in the spring after the last frost has gone. The leaves usually start to open towards the end of May, so get the plant in before then. These hardy perennials can also be planted in the fall in warmer regions. 

Growing Pink Hibiscus Plants From Seed Vs Planting Young Nursery Plants 

Pink Hibiscus Plants germinating from seed in a small black grow pot

Pink hibiscus can be successfully grown from seed with careful timing. Spring frosts must be anticipated and avoided if growing from seed. Nursery plants are usually easier, but some might not transplant well into unfamiliar growing conditions. 

What to Do Before Planting 

Planning for the anticipated height and width of pink hibiscus is crucial, especially if you’re growing the hibiscus alongside other plants. A fully-grown pink hibiscus might reach up to 12 feet in height and 6 feet in width. Make sure that the location can handle this potential size. 

What’s the Best Soil for Pink Hibiscus? 

A garden spade in the soil

The best soil for pink hibiscus needs to be slightly moist but also well-draining. They don’t like sitting in too much water. They do best in slightly acidic soil with lots of nutrients. A pH of between 6.0 and 6.5 is ideal. 

How to Plant Pink Hibiscus

Pink hibiscus is fairly easy to plant. As you remove the Hibiscus from its nursery pot, take note of the size of the root ball. Excavate a space that is twice as wide as the root ball and around the same height. Then, bed the plant in and give it a thorough drink. 

Seeds need to be started indoors. Time the sowing for six to 12 weeks before the final spring frost. Sow the seeds about a ½ inch into some seed compost. 

After four to five weeks, move the seedlings into a bigger pot. Following the last spring frost, acclimatize the young hibiscus outdoors during the daytime for about a week. Then plant it. 

Pink Hibiscus Light Preferences 

Pink Hibiscus flowers in bloom against a blue sky on a very sunny day

Pink hibiscus thrives in areas with a lot of sunlight during the day. If you live in an arid or exceptionally hot climate, you’ll need to provide the hibiscus with some shade during the afternoon. Too much harsh sun can burn the delicate leaves and flowers.

Temperature & Humidity Preferences 

Temperature: Pink hibiscus is quite hardy and can survive in a range of temperatures. The optimal temperature scale for these shrubs is between 60 and 85F. 

Humidity: Pink hibiscus likes moderate humidity. The soil must be kept slightly moist but not completely waterlogged. In drier climates, a hibiscus needs more regular watering. 


How to Care For Pink Hibiscus

A single pink hibiscus flower in bloom

Watering Pink Hibiscus Plants 

If you’ve just planted a hibiscus, it should be watered every other day for a few weeks. Once established, water pink hibiscus twice a week in the first year. 

From its second year, the hibiscus must only be watered once a week in drier periods. The soil must be kept moist, but too much water will cause problems. Avoid watering during the winter months. 

How, When, and Why to Fertilize Pink Hibiscus

Pink hibiscus loves to feed. This helps produce even bigger blooms. Give it regular doses of slow-release fertilizer during spring and summer. Fertilizers designed for roses work well, but anything with high potash levels is ideal. 

Pruning & Cutting Back Pink Hibiscus 

A cluster of Pink Hibiscus flowers in bloom

Because pink hibiscus flowers last only one day before dropping off, deadheading isn’t necessary. After the hibiscus stops flowering, trim each stem back to remove older growth. Make sure to cut just above a leaf node. 

Once the hibiscus is a few years old or reaches around five feet high, prune it annually. These deciduous shrubs benefit from being pruned back by about a third. Thinning out the center better airflow. 

How to Propagate Pink Hibiscus

Pink hibiscus is easy to propagate using stem cuttings. Cut off a young shoot about 4 to 6 inches in length. Cut just above a leaf node to allow the stem to recover. 

Prune away the lower leaves and shorten the cutting to the lowest remaining leaf node. Plant the cutting in a pot with potting mix and perlite. After about two months, the cutting can be repotted or planted in the soil. 

Overwintering 

Pink hibiscus is a hardy perennial that can overwinter in most climates. To keep it warm, spread a 2-inch layer of mulch around the base of the plant. Avoid watering too much during the winter. 

When and How to Repot Pink Hibiscus Grown in Containers 

If a pink hibiscus’s roots are starting to protrude from the drainage holes of its container, it needs repotting. 

Gently lift the hibiscus out and fill the bottom of the new pot with a few inches of potting mix. Use some of the soil from the old pot along with some fresh compost. Give the hibiscus a good drink afterward.


Common Pink Hibiscus Problems & How to Treat Them

Pink Hibiscus plant with buds not opening

Underwatering 

Yellowing foliage can be a sign of underwatering. Pink hibiscus needs slightly moist soil. Curling or shriveled leaves is also a signal. Water the plant more regularly. 

Overwatering 

If the hibiscus is wilting or shows yellow leaves, it might be getting too much water. Check the soil to see if it’s too wet. Pink hibiscus should be kept moist but not waterlogged. Too much water can cause root rot and other problems. 

Allow the plant to dry out and only resume watering when the upper inch of soil has dried out. 

Too Much Light 

Even though it loves to sunbathe, pink hibiscus can suffer from too much sun. If the climate is really hot, the harsh afternoon sun can burn the leaves or flowers. Provide some shade during the afternoon to protect your hibiscus. 

Incorrect Temperature 

Temperatures that are too hot can cause the pink hibiscus to wilt. Let the plant sit in some afternoon shade. These hardy shrubs should tolerate colder temperatures within the recommended growing zones. 

Common Pests & Diseases

Common Pests & Diseases on a pink hibiscus plant

Aphids

These common insects can be a problem for pink hibiscus. Use concentrated jets from a hose to remove them.

Gray mold 

A common fungus affliction, fuzzy gray mold occurs in humid conditions. Remove affected leaves and consider moving the hibiscus to a drier area. Water less frequently.

Powdery mildew 

Indicated by white, powdery deposits on leaves, powdery mildew is a fungus that occurs in dry conditions. Remove infected leaves and water more regularly. 


Essential Tools to Have Around

A selection of garden tools
  • Secateurs
  • Trowel
  • Watering can
  • Moisture meter

Growing Pink Hibiscus Flowers FAQs: 

Where does Pink Hibiscus grow natively?

Pink hibiscus is native to the southern regions of China.

Is Pink Hibiscus difficult to grow?

Pink hibiscus is pretty easy to grow as long as the right conditions are provided.

What month does Pink Hibiscus bloom? 

Pink hibiscus blooms from July to October.

What month do you prune Hibiscus?

Pink hibiscus can be pruned right after flowering – usually in October or November.

Do Pink Hibiscus like full sun or shade?

Pink hibiscus grows best in full sun, but in hotter areas, it will need some afternoon shade.

Wrap Up

Thanks to its towering, late-summer flowers, pink hibiscus is a gorgeous addition to the garden. Its ease of care makes it an excellent option for inexperienced gardeners. It’s ideal to use at the rear of garden borders or as part of a hedgerow. 


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