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
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

Replacing river birch from Maple Grove MN
April 22, 2014 - How soon after taking out a river birch clump tree and grinding the stump would we be able to plant a new birch clump?
view the full question and answer

When is best time to transplant Ezperanza shrubs in Buda, TX?
September 02, 2013 - I need to transplant 2 huge Esperanza's...when is the best time to uproot them and not kill them?
view the full question and answer

Perennial blooming plants for Ashland MO
April 02, 2010 - I am beginning to create a flower bed in front of my house, I do not have a green thumb so I want to know what plants would come back yearly and I can plant now in Mid Missouri?
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native petunias from Hodgeville, KY
May 12, 2013 - Planting petunias again in a house border bed.. It has been a tradition for 30+ years to plant the small upright petunias in this particular bed. It started as a Mothers Day gift to my Grandmother, ...
view the full question and answer

Suggestions for flowerbed in Mesquite TX
June 17, 2011 - I live in Mesquite and am new to the area. I am trying to make the flowerbed in the front of my house look better. I've planted some yellow roses and red roses but would like some perennial that bloo...
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