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Hibiscus Planting.

April 11, 2012

I was introduced to the Hibiscus flower by my mother when I was growing up.  She planted them every spring to grace our back patio with it’s beautiful pink and red 5 pedal flowers (and she continues to this day).  It’s a tropical plant that flourishes in warm climate areas such as Hawaii, Mexico, and Florida.  In West Virginia they only stay alive in the warm spring and summer months, but that’s fine by me.  I was lucky enough to find some on sale for $12.99 at Kroger this past weekend.

It’s kind of tradition for me to plant these on the back patio, I’ve been doing it for 5 years now.  I just love how it makes the patio feel like a luxurious outdoor living space, Resort de Bauer.  I usually don’t even look at the price tag, that’s how much I love them.  Traditionally they cost about $16-$18 each at Lowes or Walmart, so when I discovered them for $12.99 at Kroger, I considered it a steal.

The Hibiscus flower only stays in bloom for a day or so but when watered regularly they will bloom continuously all summer long.   They are so awesome.  After the flower closes, I snap it off to encourage a new bud to grow.  This year I snagged 2 red, 2 pink, and 1 yellow.  You should have seen me toting that cart around the grocery store…”watch out people” is what I was thinking, I could barely see over all the green bushy leaves!

I have 4 of these grey-ish/green planters on the back patio and one larger one between the two garage doors on the driveway.   Five years ago I drilled three holes in the bottom of each one to allow proper drainage.  I also filled them 1/3 the way up with rocks to allow water to flow through (and to save $$$ on buying potting soil).

Having the pots ready to go makes it easy to replant the Hibiscus year after year.   I started with a plan on how I wanted them on the patio.  I decided to put the red and pink plants on backside and the yellow one between the two garage doors.  I thought a “pink-red-pink-red” pattern on the patio would like festive and the yellow flowers would contrast nicely against the red brick between the garages.

I planted these Hibiscus the same way I planted my Dianthus flowers out front (mentioned here and here).  I use Lesco 12-12-12 fertilizer and some potting soil to fill ‘er in.

I started by digging out a hole in the soil with my pretty little pink gardening shovel and put that soil into a bucket.

I “tested” the hole depth several times to make sure I dug deep enough.  Once I knew the plant would fit nicely, I added my Lesco 12-12-12 fertilizer so the roots would  immediately get nutrients.

I forgot to mention that this was one of my projects while Ryan was hanging shutters over the weekend (found here).  It worked out well.  I was right along side him while he scaled the ladder.  Every time he yelled for help and could easily drop my gloves and quickly come to his aid.

Of course I repeated the same steps 4 more times until each of my bargain Kroger plants made their way to their new homes.  The last step in the process, of course, was to water.

I’ve got this process down to a science, having done it for 5 years straight.  I’m still trying to figure out where I’m going to put all five pots once we move into the new house.  The new back yard is a completely different setup so I will just have to play it by ear until we actually move in.

This past Saturday we had some friends over for dinner so I decided to go ahead and get out all the patio cushions and set everything setup for entertaining.  I must admit, the beautiful Hibiscus plants are totally my favorite thing in the backyard space.  I can’t wait for them to start growing and blooming everyday.

It’s kind of hard to see the Hibiscus plants that I just potted.  They are so green and the grass is so green so it all just sort of blends in until more flowers start blooming.

My second favorite part of the patio is our dining table.  I just love the table cloth and matching Tiffany Blue seat cushions.  I found all those pieces last year at Target.  The red tray is actually functional.  Not so much for the flowers, but they add the extra pop of color our dinner guests will totally appreciate.  Okay, that was totally an exaggeration.  But they add that extra pop that I appreciate and that’s all that matters!

You may have noticed the Hibiscus plants in the “after” photo of the shutter post.  I noticed them when I wrote the post but decided to ignore it.  Maybe you noticed them too.

You can also ignore the kitchen sink leaning against our house.  We have yet to donate that to the Habitat for Humanity…among other things on our to-do list.  And the cement piece next to the sink you ask?  That’s the windowsill for the window on the right, over the garage.  Rome wasn’t built in a day, you know!  So now you have an idea of what I was up to while Ryan hung shutters.  But of course you know that can’t be it, and it’s not.  More to come…


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