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Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Different Colours of Hibiscus Flowers

Small Yellow Hibiscus Flower

Close up of Centre of Red Hibiscus Flower
 Hibiscus flowering plant is one of the commonest and most sought after plant in India. Due to the sunny climate and strong heat available which is required for this plant to grow we see many windows and gardens adorned with hibiscus plants. There are many colours of hibiscus flowers ranging from white, yellow, orange and also many shaded variety look very attractive we had a plant that was shaded yellow and red, looked quite majestic with big blooms.
The most liked and commonly available is the red hibiscus flowering plant. The plant gives bring red to maroon blooms and each plant will give a different coloured bloom. We had many hibiscus plants over the years and the most important gift we receive is that at any time the plant is full of beautiful attractive flowers.
Red Hibiscus Flower

Red Shading Hibiscus Flower
 Cutting the flowers and keeping them in display bowls was a favorite as the blooms would last longer in shade.
Opening Yellow Hibiscus Flower
 Cheery yellow hibiscus flowers look good and also uplift our spirits. The only problems was with white aphids. This hibiscus plant is very prone to attack by white aphids. However much we use sprays, pesticides many times to remove the pests we would end up losing the plant itself!
Royal Mango Coloured Hibiscus Flower
There was a lovely hibiscus plant, white flowers looked quiet heavenly in the blue sky at time of the setting sun. Also a  pink one which had delicate blooms like a princess.
The hibiscus plants are available in many varieties. Some are bushes, some plants whereas some climbers which can be trailed on a trellis or support.
Growing tips for having healthy hibiscus blooms would be first do not get very attached to the plant. Enjoy the blooms and learn to let go if the plant is diseased as many times and many efforts it may not survive.
For the rest there are few tips to get bigger blooms- try to trim branches and keep the stronger one intact if you wish to get big flowers. If your aim is to grow a bush then trim from centre and allow the plant to grow from sides. Watering requirements are not so specific and hibiscus plant needs full sunlight for healthy growth.
The hibiscus flower is used in temples as a favorite of Lord Ganesha and other Gods. Hence the sanctity and aesthetic value of the plant is very high. During festivals hibiscus flowers are used for decorations as well as making garlands to decorate temples as well as for offerings in temples.
You can spray mild soap water to the aphids and also spray water from a  hose directly over the plant to remove the pests.  This I have bathed my plants many times till the pests drown and the plant would look happy but again in few days the same would come back.
Some hardy plants survive for many years and we had a tough one red flowering hibiscus plant which we had for many years, it would be attacked and would recover so it was a tough one, but finally there was an attack and we came to know that all nurseries and also homes in our area were affected and they all lost the hibiscus plants during that time.
I had promised myself never to get carried away in buying another hibiscus plant as we had n number of plants over the years and it is too heartbreaking  to see a close one pass away even after trying hard,  but the temptation has again come back, maybe just one plant for now!
An hibiscus garden would look very attractive with different coloured blooms where they grow only hibiscus plants, sure would be a great sight!

2 comments:

  1. Rizwana, the pests are not aphids but mealybugs who have tremendous affinity for hibiscus. They are actually pink in colour, however they generate a lot of white powder like substance which is loved by ants like the milk from aphids. Mealy bugs are slow and don't spread from plant to plant but are transported by ants who spread it to all stem ends. The powder like coating actually also helps the mealybugs survive any pesticide. however they are susceptible to potassium based soaps like dishwashing liquid. After spraying with soap solution a mild pesticide along with repeated thorough physical cleaning totally removes the pests. However after that keep lining the pot edge and the area with gamaxene (lindane powder) for several days to kill the ants and prevent them from bringing back mealybugs. And always be on the lookout for them and clean as soon as noticed again followed by gamaxene. If you plan to grow hibiscus put gamaxene around the plants every 15 days even if mealybugs are not there.

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  2. Thank you so much Debdutta for this information

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