10 Common Problems with Hibiscus Plants & How to Solve Them


Planting hibiscus brings incredible tropical beauty to your garden.

However, this plant is prone to numerous issues you should be ready to handle. Almost every part of the hibiscus is susceptible to a disease or issue.

Still, the good news is that most of these problems are easily treatable if you detect them early.

This post will break down the 10 common problems with hibiscus trees. More importantly, we’ll provide you with solutions for each.

1. Yellowing Leaves

If your hibiscus leaves are turning yellow, it’s probably due to a lack of nutrition.

Inadequate natural light, extreme temperatures, and climate instability can also lead to this issue.

In addition, unbalanced watering and pest attacks might be the causes of the problem.

Follow these tips to solve the problem:

2. Leaves Fall Off

Many hibiscus plants experience a drop in their leaves each season.

Underwatering is the first reason for this issue. Lack of sunlight can also lead to the same thing. In addition, excessive heat and inadequate nutrients are other common reasons leaves drop off.

If you’ve just transplanted your hibiscus, the issue can be due to transplant shock.

3. Dropping Flowers and Buds


The flower and buds of your hibiscus can drop mainly because of a lack of nutrition. Another common cause is the unsuitable environmental conditions you grow the plant in.

4. Root Rot

The number one reason for root rot is over-watering your hibiscus. Likewise, not providing your hibiscus with appropriate drainage can lead to the same problem.

This issue is hard to detect initially as the roots are covered. Worst still, it quickly damages the whole plant.

5. Rust Spots

Noticing orange, yellow, or brown spots on the leaves is common in hibiscus plants. These rust-like spots are likely due to a fungal disease called hollyhock.

The main cause of this disease is the plant’s exposure to moisture for a relatively long time.

Apply one of these resolutions:

6. Powdery Mildew


Powdery mildew is a white spot that appears on the hibiscus leaves. As the fungus spreads, this white spot can turn gray or tan over time.

These fungi can cause stunted growth or even lead to the whole plant falling apart.

7. Aphids


Aphids are insects that live on hibiscus leaves and feed on phloem vessels. They weaken the plant, causing it to fall eventually.

The worst thing about these insects is that they reproduce at an insanely rapid rate. You have to intervene and eliminate them as soon as you detect them.

8. Mealybugs

Mealybugs are tiny insects that reside on hibiscus plants and feed on their sap. This prevents the plants from blooming and deteriorates their health.

9. Spider Mites

Spider mites are various types of spiders that feed on hibiscus. They’re tiny insects that reproduce at an incredibly rapid rate.

So, they can completely colonize your hibiscus in a few days if you don’t intervene.

10. Thrips Attacks

Thrips are tiny, slender insects that feed on the hibiscus during its growth phase. They live and lay eggs on hibiscus buds.

However, they’re hard to detect because of their tiny size, but you can spot them using a magnifying glass.

The 10 common problems with hibiscus plants are easily treatable. If you follow the above solutions, you’ll get over all your hibiscus issues.

In addition, provide your plant with the required water and nutrition all year to boost its health. That way, it’ll be less prone to any problem.

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