There are lots of types of hibiscus: Annual, hardy perennial, and tropical varieties. They are all in the same family. Each has a different growth form and cold tolerance, but flowers have similar characteristics.
Generally, growing hibiscus flowers in this zone “8” gives the gardener some tricks to do. This type of hibiscus flower thrives in this region due to the mild annual temperatures and the frequency of extreme cold. They need special protection from freezes although the smoothest tropical hibiscus will bloom profusely.
Hardy Hibiscus Varieties for Zone 8
Hibiscus are recognized for the showy blooms, brightly colored that appear all season long. Even inlanders are able to enjoy these beautiful flowers. You just need to choose the right hibiscus varieties for zone 8. The gardener in zone 8 is lucky. The climate is milder than northern regions. The option of hibiscus is not limited to just hardy types.
Hibiscus in the Mallow family are considered hardy hibiscus that native to the eastern USA. Interestingly, those include the plants such as okra and cotton. For your information, Hollyhock is an old-fashioned of a hardy hibiscus variety too.They are noted for their tall stems, large leaves and big flowers. Those are herbaceous that die to the ground in winter and also re-sprout in spring. Another famous hibiscus is rose of Sharon. This flower can withstand temperatures in zone 5 and is a prolific bloomer.
Tropical Hibiscus Varieties for Zone 8
You need to consider these plants in the garden, as they will not survive plummeting temperatures. Tropical hibiscus is able to succumb to occasional freezes in zone 8. It should be kept in containers and moved indoors for winter or treated as an annual plant. The plants respond to long lazy days of summer by growing rapidly and producing numerous blooms. Commonly tropical hibiscus can reach 5 feet tall even they will be able to reach up to 15 feet in height.
Most of these are hardy in zones 9 – 11, however they will need some protection. Looking at the color of the hibiscus petals is the easiest way to tell if your hibiscus flower is strong. Generally, tropical hibiscus is characterized by flowers that are peach, orange, salmon, or yellow, or have double flowers.
How to Care for Hardy Hibiscus in Zone 8?
- Plant Hibiscus Outdoors
You are able to plant hardy hibiscus outdoors any time of the year, except winter. Please space them 3 to 6 feet from the nearest shrub, tree or building in partial to full sun. Then, plant the top of the root ball level with the ground in a hole 2 or 3 times as wide as the root ball. Fill in the hole with soil, then pack firmly and water.
- Follow a Watering Schedule
Water the hibiscus frequently so that the soil is always moist, but never wet. You have to water them less in the winter months.
- Apply a Fertilizer
During the growing season, Apply fertilize hardy hibiscus every two weeks with plant food is a must.
- Prune above Side Shoots
Please prune hardy hibiscus as needed with sharp pruning shears above a side shoot. Due to more branches appearing at each cut, pruning of large, inner branches near the ground will help promote a full lush plant.
- Watch for the Plant Pests
You have to check the plant regularly for the pests, particularly mealybugs, aphids and whiteflies. Also, treat infestations with horticultural oil or insecticidal soap.
- Give Winter Protection
You have to cover the hardy hibiscus if temperatures are expected to drop below 30 degrees Fahrenheit.
How to Care for Tropical Hibiscus in Zone 8?
Select a Pot With Drainage Holes
By giving a large pot with good drainage, you can grow tropical hibiscus in Zone 8 any time of the year. Ensure the surface of the root ball is 1 or 2 inches below the pot’s rim. Please fill in around the root ball with potting soil, then pack it firmly and water it.
Give Partial to full Sun
You have to place the container in partial to full sun. The containers expose the root ball to more extreme temperatures than in-ground plants. Thus, place containers in a shadier area.
Make a Watering Schedule
You have to water regularly and keep the soil moist, but never wet. Water less during the winter but you do not let the soil dry out completely.
Apply a Fertilizer
You need to fertilize your tropical hibiscus twice a month with all-purpose plant food during the growing season.
Prune to Maintain Shape
To maintain its shape, you can prune this tropical hibiscus shrubs and lso to keep it proportional. Then, trim with sharp pruning shears above a side shoot. Prune large inner branches near the soil to promote fullness.
When Temperatures Drop You Have to Bring the Plant Indoors
Prune the smaller branches to 4 or 5 inches from the main stems. Bring the containers indoors when nighttime temperatures are expected to drop below 40 – 45 degrees Fahrenheit. American Hibiscus Society points out that this plant does not tolerate frost well. Light indoor locations brightly with sun or fluorescent lights. Just keep indoor temperatures between 55 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
Watch for Insects
Check your tropical hibiscus regularly for mealybugs, aphids and white flie. You have to treat infested plants with horticultural oil or insecticidal soap. Also, eliminate any pests before bringing containers indoors for the winter.
Do not expect growing hibiscus in this zone to survive the cold weather, although you can plant tropical hibiscus in Zone 8 in the ground as an annual. Please plant it outdoors in spring to take advantage of the entire growing season.
Mostly to grow and care hibiscus in zone 8 is low maintenance than adding irrigation in summer, full sun, moist soil and in spring to give light nitrogen fertilizer.