En Espa—ol

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
3 ratings

Tuesday - September 21, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation
Title: Planting star hibiscus seeds from Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

TX star hibiscus seeds. How & when to plant in ground & in pots. Thank you, Carol

ANSWER:

Hibiscus coccineus (Texas Star Hibiscus) is, strangely enough, not native to Texas, but instead its range is from Florida to Mississippi. However, the common name makes it very popular in Texas and it grows well here, so no worries.

From Floridata, this article on Hibiscus coccineus includes these instructions on using seed:

"Propagation: By seeds or root division. Seeds should be punctured with a needle or scraped with a file before planting."

Our own Native Plant Database doesn't say a whole lot more:

"Description: Easily grown from seed."

So, we went to Jill Nokes' book How to Grow Native Plants of Texas and the Southwest. See Bibliography below. She addressed Hibiscus in general, and here is an extract from her advice:

"Some species of Hibiscus will germinate from untreated seeds gathered in the previous season, while others require slight scarification. All hibiscus should be planted outdoors after all danger of frost is past and the soil has warmed, or earlier in a greenhouse. The soil in the seedbed must be warm before germination will proceed. Sow seeds thinly about 1/4" deep in well-drained soil. Press the seeds into the soil and gently water."

"Seedlings grow relatively fast if given filtered but strong sunlight and lightly fertilized. Spring-sown seedlings will be large enough for a one-gallon container by the fall and will bloom the following spring. Transplant seeds from the flat after they have grown their third set of leaves."

We suggest that on the subject of growing the Texas Star Hibiscus you read our How-To Article Container Gardening with Native Plants.

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Hibiscus coccineus


Hibiscus coccineus


Hibiscus coccineus


Hibiscus coccineus

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Propagation Questions

Propagation of Emory Oak acorns
May 08, 2005 - Dear Wildflower Experts, By any chance do you know how we could obtain some Emory Oak acorns to plant on our farm on the Eastern Shore of Maryland? I know itís not a given that the trees would grow...
view the full question and answer

When to plant bluebonnet seed
October 16, 2007 - When do I put out Bluebonnet seed? Do I soak them first? Thank You.
view the full question and answer

Spreading bluebonnets in pasture from Ledbetter TX
April 29, 2013 - I've found a small patch of bluebonnets in my back pasture in Ledbetter, tx. What is the best method of encouraging their spread across the pasture? I've heard that one can pull up the plants and ...
view the full question and answer

Propagation of Prunus Mexicana in Rusk TX
July 29, 2009 - How do you scarify seeds from the Prunus Mexicana? Can the branches be made to grow roots?
view the full question and answer

Transplanting Mexican bonebract in Floresville, TX
November 12, 2008 - My kids and I finally identified a small plant that we found growing in our pasture. There was only one and it is lovely. It is the Mexican Bonebract. What I am interested in finding out is how to tra...
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