One plant that every Florida yard should have is the fantastic hibiscus.
A hibiscus will bloom constantly for much of the year in Florida. It loves the sun and does extremely well in the hot and humid climate.
Hibiscus plants come in a wide variety of colors and types. Some can grow in northern climates, but the ones I refer to here are tropical. They will not die over the winter. It’s not really necessary to know your types (unless you are searching for something specific, or mail ordering) because local stores will sell the types that work in your area of the country, or world.
One problem I remember having is aphids that get on the flowers and plant, but this new hibiscus contained a tag that said it was protected from aphids, white flies, and some other bugs. So we’ll see.
They are easy to plant. Remove any grass in the area and dig a big wide hole. Mix together some kind of fertilizer, bone meal, and or garden soil and add that back into the hole with some of the dirt that was removed. Push the dirt down around the edge of the root ball and then water thoroughly… that means a lot. If the plant still looks great the next day, then you did a good job. Water again, and continue to water well until it gets established.
My new hibiscus has a double orange bloom, which looks like a ruffle compared to the flat types of flower. It was the prettiest flower I saw among the bunches of plants at the local Home Depot. I planted it in a spot that should get a lot of sun year round. Once I buy some mulch, I’ll put that all around the bottom to help keep the soil moist. Then I can water it less often.
Although I have mainly been shopping for plants at Home Depot, I prefer to support a privately owned nursery. I am not very familiar with any around here. I’ve already been to Lindleys, and wasn’t all that impressed. One that I plan to visit is Garden Arts and is located on Flagler Ave. Generally I only go to the very touristy Flagler Ave. to eat at Breakers Restaurant. I will brave the crowds to eat a yummy fish sandwich while looking out at the ocean.
Some friends just told me about the Garden Arts nursery and suggested I visit. I have a free parking pass for the beachside lot (yes, they charge to park now!), so I may do just that. Then I will write a review about the place, and visit often … if I like it.
Now that I have a hibiscus growing in my yard, it’s a reminder that I’m settling into my new lifestyle which is a throwback to a very old life. When I see my photos of the huge piles of snow, and remember suffering without power for days during ice storms, I really don’t miss dealing with those problems. Walking out the door, without a coat on, day or night, is quite a sweet change of pace for me.