En EspaÑol

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
1 rating

Thursday - August 12, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Planting, Transplants
Title: Should I plant a potted Texas Star Hibiscus in August in Austin, TX?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

I bought a red Texas Star Hibiscus, in March, in a 6" pot and 2 ft tall. I repotted it to a 12" clay pot, put it under deck roof near edge, where it gets a bit of morning sun and filtered light rest of day. It's 95+ degrees on deck daily, so I water it daily. It's grown to 5' with 1-2 blooms daily. Should I put it in the ground in August, or wait till next spring? I don't want to shock or kill it. It's leggy, but otherwise fine. I am in zone 9, I believe. Thanks so much for all you do on your site!

ANSWER:

The Texas Star Hibiscus Hibiscus coccineus (scarlet rosemallow) has a spectacular flower which this article from Floridata says is one of the one of the largest and most beautiful of North American native flowers. The plant occurs naturally in swamps, marshes, and ditches from southern Georgia to central Florida, so keeping it well watered is a good idea; just don't overdo the watering.

I wouid not recommend putting your Hibiscus into the ground during August in Austin. This would stress the plant, and you would probably lose the blooms that you are now getting. The plant is a perennial and will go dormant over winter and resprout in the spring. By waiting till later in the fall when the plant begins to go dormant, you can minimize the transplant shock and allow the roots to become established and get ready for spring. It is hardy in USDA Zones 7-11 (Austin is in USDA Zone 8) so it should survive the winter just fine.

The plant is probably getting leggy because it isn't receiving enough sun.


Hibiscus coccineus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Planting Questions

Flowers under pine trees from Elkhart Indiana
May 02, 2013 - I have a number of pine trees at the back of my lot and would like to plant flowers under the tree. What can I plant?
view the full question and answer

Planting wildflowers from Wichita Falls, TX
August 24, 2013 - Hi, Thanks so much for the answers you give! You've been very helpful to me in the past. I have two quick questions: 1) I have been harvesting seeds from my wildflowers. I wonder when the best time...
view the full question and answer

Seeds of Meremia dissecta from Austin
September 30, 2012 - I have a large quantity of seeds of Merremia dissecta that I acquired from plants growing in the parking lot of the San Antonio Museum of Art. (Hmmm… I wonder if it's called alamo vine because of som...
view the full question and answer

Need suggestion for a tree with a tap root in Oklahoma City, OK.
October 27, 2012 - I would like to know the best tree to plant in my area that does well. Would like a tap root tree and also a tree that will not mess with my septic lines. Thank you
view the full question and answer

Privacy screen for Sedona AZ
August 02, 2013 - I live In Sedona Az. A builder just built a house next to my house and the new house is ugly to look at. What plant or tree would grow fast and reach 18 foot in height fast. It can be about 5 to 6 foo...
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