Essential Hibiscus Fertility Facts

The following is a brief discussion of Hibiscus fertility needs and best practices.

Hibiscus are heavy feeders. They like to be fertilized lightly and often, at least once per month during the growing season.  The goal here is to maintain an adequate supply of nutrients that promote profuse blooming.  A balanced mixture of Nitrogen (N), Phosphorous (P), and Potassium (K) will be inadequate, unless it contains other essential elements to the Hibiscus including; Magnesium, Manganese, Iron, Copper and Zinc.  Magnesium (Mg) is critical to Hibiscus and should be a minimum of 3% in your plant food mix.

Hibiscus prefer a slightly acid soil (pH 6-7), because micronutrients are more available to the plant.  Iron (Fe) deficiency is the most common micronutrient deficiency in Hibiscus.  Iron is not available in alkaline, high pH soils.  Using acid forming fertilizers like HibisGain can maintain and even acidify the soil making these nutrients more available.  If your plant has younger leaves that are yellow and the larger veins are green, (interveinal chlorosis), you have an Fe deficiency.

Never apply fertilizer to dry soil.  Always water Hibiscus well both before and after fertilization.  Keep the granular fertilizer off the foliage and away from the trunk.  These practices help insure you will not burn the plant.

Most growers prefer a low phosphate (P) fertilizer like a 12-6-8, since it helps produce the highest quality and quantity of blooms.  Professional growers avoid the so called “Bloom Special” fertilizer mixes like 10-40-10 that contains high amounts of (P).  High Phosphorous amounts in the soil cause the destruction of Hibiscus health over time.

Try Hibisgain® on your beautiful plants.  It’s a properly balanced, nutrient available plant food specifically developed to promote blooming in Hibiscus.

We are blessed with the beauty of Hibiscus.  May we go and grow them in their greatest splendor, creating color and joy and beauty for anyone and all to enjoy and cherish.

Take care!