En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - August 13, 2005

From: Lawrence, KS
Region: Midwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Native or non-native hibiscus for Kansas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I recently purchased a 10" Hibiscus flowering plant and would like to know how to care for it. How much water and sunlight does it need and how long I can expect it to live? It is a beautiful plant and let's just say I don't exactly have a green thumb!

ANSWER:

There are two species of Hibiscus that are native to Kansas: Scarlet rose mallow (Hibiscus laevis) and Crimson-eyed rose mallow (H. moscheutos). If you select "Growing Conditions" from the menu at the top of the page for each flower, you will see that both grow well in part shade, require lots of water and a moist soil. For H. laevis the soil needs to be acidic; while for H. moscheutos, the soil should be alkaline. Both should do well growing outdoors.

If, however, you have bought one of the non-native tropical species of Chinese hibiscus (H. rosa-sinensis) or Rose of Sharon or Shrub Althea (H. syriacus) the care requirements will be different and they may, or may not, do well outside in the Kansas winter.
 

More Non-Natives Questions

Non-native banana trees
June 06, 2008 - I recently planted two types of Banana trees, a Darjeeling and a Giant Nepal. I know that both are hardy to my zone 7 but that the Nepal needed heavy mulching. My first question is how long will it ta...
view the full question and answer

What are the differences between Arbutus xalapensis, A. unedo and A. marina
August 29, 2013 - One nursery lists madrone trees as arbutus uneda compacta and arbutus marina. The other lists it as arbutus xalapensis, which is the only name I can find in the data base. There is a very large pric...
view the full question and answer

How much water does St. Augustine require in Junction, TX?
February 12, 2012 - Can you point me towards a concrete study on how much water St Augustine requires to survive? Much appreciated - Native American Seed
view the full question and answer

Replacements for photinia from San Antonio
August 31, 2012 - i just read your response to someone regarding Red Tip shrubs. You just saved me thousands of dollars ! I was getting ready to order over 250 of these to line my 2.5 acre fence line. What shrub would ...
view the full question and answer

Non-native hybrid willows dropping leaves in Downey CA
July 22, 2010 - I have 1 year old Hybrid Willows that are strong and 12 feet tall, with many branches. All of a sudden they are dropping their leaves in July. I got them for fast growing shade, now the branches are ...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center