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Beginner Gardening Questions: Hibiscus help- is it seeding or is there something wrong?

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impynic
Drexel Heights, AZ
(Zone 8a)

January 11, 2014
5:26 PM

Post #9745583

I'm new to gardening and I'm not sure what to do so,I thought I would post here.I couldn't really find any help on google. Can anyone tell me if this is normal? I haven't see this before on my Hibiscus. I bought it at Lowe's back in September, and I can't remember what kind it is now. It look like there are seeds on it, not bugs. Should I just let everything be for now? Thank you!

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bluetexasbonnie
Geronimo, TX

January 11, 2014
6:22 PM

Post #9745611

Aphids -- lots and lots of aphids. Where are those d@mn lady bugs when you need them?

Personally, I don't usually treat for aphids. I figure that the beneficials will show up sooner or later. I don't want to hurt them.

None of my plants have died from aphids, but they sure can look ugly for a time.
impynic
Drexel Heights, AZ
(Zone 8a)

January 11, 2014
6:41 PM

Post #9745619

Thank you! They sure are ugly- and they weren't moving at all, that's why I thought they were seeds. They are everywhere, holy cow!
Diana_K
Contra Costa County, CA
(Zone 9b)

January 12, 2014
6:19 PM

Post #9746324

You could try hosing them off. A strong spray from a garden hose can help. They may come right back, of course.
Look for aphids or something that look swollen and tan. They are dead from a beneficial wasp. Look for lady beetles and their larvae.
If you see these beneficials then you have some help in the fight against the aphids. If you do not see anything helping, then you might spray with something mild, perhaps an insecticidal soap.

brendak654

brendak654
Anna, IL
(Zone 6b)

January 13, 2014
9:09 AM

Post #9746790

Yes, hosing those aphids off would be my suggestion, too. As in a burst of water now and again. Your seeds for a hibiscus will be on the inside, way down inside where the spent bloom was.

GOOD LUCK!
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

January 13, 2014
9:48 AM

Post #9746812

You have a massive invasion of Greenfly and I suspect Black fly too, however, for a quick SHORT LIVED help, mix small amount of dish washing up liquid soap with water and use a spray like you see hairdressers use for damping hair, mist this onto the thickly covered buds and flower heads and you can help by gently rubbing your hands up and around the buds as you spray, the open flowers will maybe loose the petals but still rub / kill the aphids sticking to the green areas of the plants. leave the plants alone for a couple of days and use the garden hose in-between using the soap mix. I know there are purists who claim there are chemicals in the soap, however, we can buy dish soap here claiming chemical free, however my own these people have NEVER had a full blown large infestation of aphids sucking the heart out of their plants OR they have skin that is super sensitive to dish soap as I am in my view 50 TH yar of marriage and swear I have never had damage done to my skin from dish soap even from the very powerful ones from YEARS ago.
My method of gardening is Chemical free, BUT, there is a thing called LAST resort or enjoy watching your garden being ruined by Aphids, using the garden hose in one hand and holding the plant area affected in the other while giving a gentle rub is great too but you will have to do this every day till your infestation is reduced to a few bugs, you might loose a few flower buds at the start BUT, your going to loose these anyway by having the sap sucked out of them, the next problem IF you cant get rid of the Aphids is the black sticky mould that the Aphids POO causes it's called Honey mould, this in turn attracts other insects to come live off this sweat excrement, so even after the Aphids have died from cold or whatever, IF NOT TREATED, you get even more problems down the line, ANT's can become a huge problem as they love the sweat honey mould causes and they will start to defend the Aphids IF other good predators come to eat the Aphids, like lady bugs, birds and many more GOOD garden friendly insects.

Hope this helps you out, I would act NOW so you get rid of these small pests before the plants show signs of stress,
Best wishes and good luck. WeeNel.

brendak654

brendak654
Anna, IL
(Zone 6b)

January 13, 2014
2:21 PM

Post #9747081

I don't know if the insects are all over the hibiscus or mainly feasting on new growth and the buds/blooms. I would also be tempted to cut all the buds and blooms off and dispose of them to the extent that the insects cannot multiply from there.
purpleinopp
Opp, AL
(Zone 8b)

January 14, 2014
9:29 AM

Post #9747663

Is it possible to grow Hibiscus in AZ?
impynic
Drexel Heights, AZ
(Zone 8a)

January 20, 2014
10:25 AM

Post #9751940

Thanks for all the help! I've been spraying soapy water and it seems to be helping. Only a few left. I wish I had some ladybugs in my garden, but they don't seem to be out and about.
Purpleinopp- Yes! Hibiscus does grow here! I've got it in a shady part of my yard so it has some reprieve from the hot sun and it seems to be doing well so far. I planted it in September though, so I'll have to see how it does during the hot, hot summer. I might end up getting a sun shade for it if it starts drooping. I do know several people that have had a lot of luck with them here.
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

January 20, 2014
6:18 PM

Post #9752250

A sun shade is the way to go and make sure you are able to give enough water too, I sometimes have to make a circular dent in the soil around the root area so when I have to add water in really hot weather (Here in UK we rarely need sun shades) or puddled rings in the soil) the dent in the soil makes puddles when watered and this helps more moisture get to the root area, add mulch around this area too to help prevent evaporation and maybe water at night when the air is cooler, make sure if watering at night you soak the soil and not just the foliage, in fact try NOT wet the foliage if watering at night if this could cause mould to form.

To make the sun shade jut stick 3-4 garden canes into the soil and tie an old net curtain or sheet to the canes, light weight material is best as any breeze will help cool by wafting the material.
Hope this can help a bit and you get much enjoyment from these lovely plants.
Best Regards. WeeNel.

kittriana

kittriana
Magnolia, TX
(Zone 8b)

January 21, 2014
9:56 AM

Post #9752658

Ants farm the aphids- store their eggs and feed them to get that aphid honey. aphids arent killed by normal poison treatments, tho soap can help. Means hosing them off leaves em arround to come back a 2nd time, and 3rd til your whole area looks like a moving sea of aphids...
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

January 28, 2014
3:16 PM

Post #9757599

If you use a decent amount of force with the JET on the hose, the Aphids are killed (NOT ALL BUT A GREAT MANY) and hosed every few days, it really does get the bugs under control,

The green and Black flies feed mainly on the new tender growth, that's why we find them on buds, new leaf, in the tender leaf axels ect, also make sure you hose / mist on the underside of the foliage too as they go there to rest and out of site from predators like small birds, insects and other predators. what do you have to lose, just water and a little time.
Good luck. WeeNel.

blomma

blomma
Casper, WY
(Zone 4a)

February 26, 2014
11:22 PM

Post #9777657

Holy Cow! I have never seen so many bugs on one plant. I agree with spraying with a hose. You can also fill a spray bottle with soapy water.

Personally, I use an insecticid spray that kills on contact, called Malathion. I use it for everything. I get aphids on my roses in the spring as the new growth develops.

purpleinhopp, you didn't specify what kind of Hibiscus since there are tropical and hardy cultivars. The hardy types H. moscheutos is hardy here in Wyoming. I have 3 different colors in my yard all grown from seed.

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WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

March 1, 2014
1:16 PM

Post #9779546

I've had Roses, Variety of different shrubs and everything else from Poppies to Clematis with the same amount of Aphids, unlike people, when there is overcrowding, Aphids just carry on sucking, but people move on LOL.

Keep up the misting/spraying using dish liquid soap as now-a-days, there are no chemicals in those products and if not helping, more force with the hosepipe but Don't break off the tender growth with too much power, try NOT use the soap mix in sunshine, in fact I like to spray with the soap either early morning or late evening but that's MY own view, not a rule.

Good luck, you sound like your winning the fight and as much as it's extra work for you, it really does pay off and better than buying expensive chemical mixes that can kill off the good bugs too.
Best Regards. WeeNel.
cactusman8
San Marcos, TX
(Zone 8b)

March 23, 2014
11:46 AM

Post #9796143

Has anyone ever tried shampoo as a substitute for dish soap. it would seem to be a less harsh alternative. I'm going to give it a shot on my wife's hibiscus and if it works I'll use it on other plants.
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

March 23, 2014
6:02 PM

Post #9796381

Cactusman, you need to read the ingredients or list of additives with the shampoo's, Some have chemicals added for helping keep blond hair lighter, dark hair darker, (don't ask me if all that stuff works) but with washing up soap diluted with tepid water, then sprayed, wont harm the plants, don't be silly by thinking the more soap the better, too strong and your plant will be covered in bubbles LOL.

Washing up soaps now-a-days are all chemical free due to sking problems and we actually have our hands in washing up soapy water several times a day and shampoo's probably at the most, once a day for a shorter period of time.
The washing up soap also have additives like oil or hand creams to help prevent your skin drying out and this is where they come into there own, the oils stick to the little tint Aphids, green or black flies, it prevents them breathing and also sticks to them so they cant move away to pastures new, their wings are oily and they cant fly, the soapy substance also means they cant mate/lay eggs and the eggs cant hatch..
I'm not saying shampoo wont work, I say check out the format, washing up soap is way cheaper too.

Best of luck and kind Regards. WeeNel.

blomma

blomma
Casper, WY
(Zone 4a)

March 23, 2014
8:20 PM

Post #9796488

cactusman8,
Try liquid dishsoap like Joy, Ivory, etc.. If good enought for dishes, certainy good enugh for aphids. You may also want to try to get rid of the ants since they herd aphids for the sweet secretion they leave behind.

A strong stream of water with the hose will dislodge the aphids, then use a spray of your choice to kill the eggs and babies.
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

March 24, 2014
1:21 PM

Post #9797090

I think were confusing very small, soft skinned, Aphids, with those crow's from the Hitchcock film "the Birds" LOL, the good blast from the hose will kill off MOST of the aphids.
The ones that drop to the ground will be half dead or stunned, more than likely wont survive. However a few days later, the (already laid Eggs) will hatch out and those fully formed new generation will need treated the same way, that's why you need to mist / spray with the dish water soap mix, continue till the plants are aphid free.
Leave the chemical sprays in the store as these things usually kill off all the good bugs we need for pollination of our crops, remember even the birds feed on the Aphids, so they don't deserve to be poisoned just for helping us get rid of our pests.

Trust me, the spraying and blast with the hose works best, you need to do this every few days but that is better than spraying chemicals every few days as well.I've been doing the dish soap method for years.
Happy gardening and good luck.
Kindest Regards.
WeeNel.
Hanna2017
Kiev
Ukraine

April 7, 2014
11:46 AM

Post #9807040

Oh, Holly Cow! It is a disease which I faced with on my roses( But my friends from Megaflowers, who are professional florists, advised to use a whitewash. Just pour it under the flowers :)
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

April 7, 2014
2:58 PM

Post #9807174

Hanna, aphids are NOT a disease, they are very tiny insects that suck the juice/ sap out of the plants, healthy plants can withstand a bit of sucking from the new lush foliage but any weaker plants can THEN get disease set in as the weaker plants cant fight both.
Some Aphids are actually guarded by other insects like ants, they will protect (greenfly aphids) as the aphids leave a sweet sticky honey type secretion that the ants need for food.
The honey secretion causes fungus, (Fungus is a disease.

I suggest you go back to your friends at Megaflower and ask what type of WHITEWASH they recommend, because what you would use on CUT flowers for indoor use, is different from what you need to help remove APHID'S (tiny sucking flies) from outdoor growing plants.
Hope this helps you understand the difference between Aphids and Diseases.
Kindest Regards.
WeeNel.
Rislandgirl
Avalon, CA

May 3, 2014
7:00 AM

Post #9828699

I have had success with a home-made remedy I read online.
I crushed fresh garlic and added in Dr. Brommer's organic soap and olive oil. Let it saturate overnight.
Strain out the solids of garlic. You now have a concentrate. Add water and spray plants.
It may get rid of beneficials as well, but it did get those aphids under control!
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

May 6, 2014
10:54 PM

Post #9831968

Rislandgirl, you have hit the nail on the head, Aphids hate garlic.
My old Dad, now passed away, always planted his Roses AND a few cloves of garlic together,
The aroma of the garlic kept the aphids at bay, Sometimes he brewed up a mix of boiled water and crushed garlic, left to chill and washed the Rose foliage and the soil with the mixture, the Rose roots took up the garlic water and he swore blind it prevented earwigs, aphids and lot's of other sucking / chewing insects away.
I do grow garlic and onions in beds beside my carrots and parsnips as it really does deter the Carrot root fly etc, we call it companion planting where one plant acts as a defence for the neighbouring plants that can live in harmony, I cant seem to grow Cucumbers and sweet peppers in beside Tomato's so maybe there is something that happens ,(just like us IF you don't like the neighbours LOL.
Best Regards.
WeeNel.

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