Rose of Sharon culture

This is one of the easiest perennial shrubs to grow! This plant is perfect for the beginner gardener or the experienced gardener- makes no difference! It thrives in both neglect and extreme care!

As a general rule, Rose of Sharon bushes can get 8′-10′ tall and have a spread of 4′-6′. I’m sure that you’re thinking “HOLY COW! THAT’S TOO TALL FOR WHAT I’M LOOKING FOR IN A SHRUB!” But there is a solution! First, there are some varieties that are naturally shorter-growers, e.g., Hibiscus syriacus ‘Minerva’ reaches only 5′-8′. Secondly, this is when you can get pretty aggressive with your pruning shears. If you are looking for a shorter plant, there is nothing that stops you from trimming it down to the size that you are looking for. It is better if you don’t let the shrub’s general height get too far from the general range you are looking for because then after you prune, it will look very “sticky” in terms of being lots of stick and few leaves.

Blooms: Blossoms can be white, red, lavender or light blue (some have mixtures of these colors and/or double-blooms). Blooms will normally form in the middle of summer and can continue into the fall- they are blooming machines!

Location: US Zones 5-9. Partial to full sun is best. In full sun, you are more likely to get a nice well-rounded plant that is more likely to bloom. If you are looking for the full growth- remember to allow room for it to grow and expand. (Because it will! It is like they have a mind of their own!!)

Watering: These plants are extremely tolerant of dry conditions. It can handle higher-levels of heat/drought after it’s been established for a few months.

Other fun tidbits:

  • These are able to be grown from seed or even able to propagate your own seeds! Just need to make sure that a flower is pollinated, and then a seed pod will form (birds like these by the way) and inside will be your seed crop for the following year!
  • Speaking of seeds, Rose of Sharon seeds can often be blown about and cause new little seedlings to sprout up EVERYWHERE! If you aren’t looking for extra plants to arrive out of nowhere, I suggest that you cut off the seed pods before they ripen and dry to help control the spreading action.
  • Rose of Sharon are great for a flowering hedge along houses or property lines! Keep them as tall or as short as you would like and they will come back year after year!
  • Sometimes the color of the blooms can change with different soil chemistry. For example, I received a purple-colored Rose of Sharon, and after planting it in my yard, it will now only produce white blossoms with a red throat! Weird, huh?
Image

White and Red Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus)

 

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