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

Thursday - November 10, 2005

From: Belton, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: Hibiscus wilt in Texas Star hibiscus
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

I have a Texas star hibiscus on my deck. It flourished all summer, but not quite a month ago, the leaves turned yellow and fell off. Will it come back? What happened???

ANSWER:

Assuming your hibiscus was receiving enough water, the problem sounds suspiciously like a wilt disease caused by a soil-borne fungal pathogen. The symptoms that you describe are typical of hibiscus wilt disease. However, to be sure you should pull a dead plant out of the ground, shake off as much soil as possible away from your landscape, and take the plant -- roots and all -- to your county agriculture extension office for positive identification of the causal agent.

 

If the problem is hibiscus wilt, the plants are probably lost. Further, you would not want to replace them with more hibiscus in the same location because the fungal pathogens can persist for quite a long time in the soil and would likely infect and kill your replacement plants.

 

Here is a link to a very good article on Hibiscus Wilt.

 

Although Texas Star hibiscus, Hibiscus coccineus is thought by many to be a Texas native, it is not. It is native only from Florida to Louisiana. It is also known by the common names Scarlet Hibiscus, Swamp Hibiscus and Scarlet Rose Mallow.

 

More Diseases and Disorders Questions

Problems with Fantex ash in Pahrump NV
April 08, 2010 - We planted a Fantex Ash tree over 3 years ago and it was thriving until recently. This year when the temperature began to warm up, it blossomed and then suddenly stopped growing. All the other trees...
view the full question and answer

How to treat bark damage on oak tree
November 15, 2011 - I have an oak tree approx. 50 ft., live in austin, texas. the tree has dropped bark about 3-4 ft above ground, in a section of 4 inches by 8 inches, and the tree appears dark where the bark was. is ...
view the full question and answer

Curling, Red Leaves on Gaura
July 18, 2013 - My gaura had most of its lower leaves turn red and then fall off. It is July now, I bought and planted it in May where it seemed to do really well growing several more inches tall and blooming nicely....
view the full question and answer

Old oak tree dropping leaves in Hazlet Township NJ
July 08, 2013 - I am 84 yrs old and have a 50 year old pin? oak. No more acorns, but the leaves are falling in clumps and are still alive. Every day I fill a huge garden bag with them. I live on a fixed income and...
view the full question and answer

Problems with dogwood tree in Jacksonville FL
February 28, 2010 - Sir, I believe I have a Cornus drummondii, a stiff dogwood tree on my lawn which a few years ago was big, lush and full of branches and leaves. In the last 2 years I have noticed about 80% of it drop...
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
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center