What does Rose of Sharon mean? Rose of Sharon is a plant with attractive flowers having the botanical name Hibiscus syriacus. It is known for relatively late-blooming as you will find it bringing its bloom after many other flowers have stopped blooming. Its petals can be white, lavender, red, or light blue.
Rose of Sharon has its origin from India and China and is a member of the Malvaceae or mallow family. It is also known as Korean Rose, Chinese hibiscus, or rose mallow and you can find it in bloom around late summer or early fall.
Rose of Sharon is a shrub that does well in moist but well-drained soil. It can stand the heat, humidity, air pollution, drought, and even poor soil. It is best to grow it under the full sun to prevent fungal infections that may occur if it is grown in shaded areas with excessive moisture. It is a drought-tolerant plant and can be affected by excessive moisture instead of a lack of moisture.
Maintaining the Rose of Sharon is not such a difficult affair but pruning it from time to time gives it a more attractive look. The period when they are dormant in late winter or early spring is a very good time to prune the plant.
To prune it, you need to remove the deadwood first, and then prune the offshoots to give the plant a good appearance.
Best Time to Prune
Rose of Sharon is a hardy shrub that does not require much upkeep. If you wish to prune it, it is better done in cold months when they are dormant. That is between the months of March and May, and once the weather starts getting warm, they will be ready to grow new shoots.
But if you prune them quite early or late, they may suffer from the shock which will affect their growth and leave them with a stunning look.
Removing Dead and Damaged Wood
Some branches may have begun to rot away or die off. Take note of such branches and move close to the connecting branch to cut them off. You can test to know whether a branch is dead or not when you scrape off some of its bark.
If it looks green, then it is still alive; if it looks brownish, then it should be cut off. You will need to use a pruning shear to cut them off, or a pair of heavy-duty loppers if the branch is thick and hard.
You will find some of its branches crossing each other. Look at the one that twists around the other more and clip it off at the branch. Removing such crossing branches will allow it to have more air and also reduce disease and pest infections.
Shortening Tall Branches
Rose of Sharon tends to grow more in an upward direction and to give it an attractive look, you will need to prune down the tallest branches. You can prune them all-round or you make a shallow ‘V’ shape in the middle.
Dealing with Suckers
Suckers usually sprout out along the lower portion of the main branches or at the bottom part of the plant. They usually give the plant an unattractive appearance and also take up some of its nutrients.
So it is important to prune them off. Cut each stalk as close to its base as possible. This will not stop it from growing back but will slow the rate of growth. Once the plant begins to have stalkers, you will need to prune them down at least thrice in a year.
Prune Off to Rejuvenate It
If the plant is in need of some extra attention, especially if it has begun aging, you may need to prune off up to two-thirds of it. This will allow it to develop new blooms which will make the plant healthier and more attractive.
While it is still dormant, you can prune it down to as much as 2-3 feet length. If you prune away most of its branches, when it blooms, it will have fewer but more beautiful and bolder flowers.
Managing Your Plants
When the seeds of the plant grow and reach maturity, they fall off and shatter, littering the environment. In a short time, new plants will begin to grow and they can make the whole place look very much unattractive.
So, you need to carefully look for seed pods close to the center of a cluster of big leaves and snip them below the stem with your pruning shears. Take the seed far and dispose of them where there is no soil to make them grow out.
Shaping Your Flowers to Match with the Environment
Look at the different structures in the environment to give you a good idea of beautiful shapes that you can trim your flowers into. Shaping them also makes them easy to manage as they will be prevented from outgrowing their positions or blocking entrances or walkways.
You can trim much of their bottom to prevent them from spreading out very much. You can also prune them down by up to two-thirds and they will even bloom better by their next growing season.
Shape them to be Like Trees
You can grow Rose of Sharon to look like small trees especially if you would like to see your garden looking very tidy and organized. Check the base of the flower and find where the lowest big branches intersect.
Take off much of the smaller branches to about half the length of the new trunk. You can remove upcoming growths on the central trunk, so they don’t change the shape of the plant. They are easy to manage when shaped like trees.
If you want to give Rose of Sharon a well-defined shape, it is best you prune it into your desired shape in its first two seasons. This will help guide it into the desired shape that it will grow into.
Rose of Sharon is not so difficult to manage as it can do with minimal water but it should be well exposed to sunlight to prevent chances of it getting infected. You need to have a guided plan on how to manage and prune the plants, so they don’t become excessive and litter the environment. If you prune them well, you will get healthier and more attractive flowers in their blooming season. You may wish to shape them into different attractive shapes or prune them into small trees.
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