Common Hibiscus Problems {Explained!}

Although Hibiscus are generally pretty hardy, they, like all plants, can suffer with problems. If you are wondering how to keep your Hibiscus healthy, you’ve come to the right place!

We are going to take you through some of the common problems suffered by Hibiscus plants, and what you can do to fix them.

Why Are My Hibiscus Leaves Turning Yellow?

Why Are My Hibiscus Leaves Turning Yellow

Yellowing leaves on any plant are a big red flag for gardeners – after all, leaves are meant to be green, right?

If your Hibiscus leaves are turning yellow, there could be a few potential reasons for this:

  • Not enough light. If your sun-loving Hibiscus is not receiving enough of its favorite bright sunlight, this can cause problems with the leaves.
  • Too much direct sunlight. Alternately, if your Hibiscus is getting too much light, this excess sunlight can actually burn the leaves.
  • Temperature changes. Hibiscus like to be kept constantly humid, so if their environment changes drastically you can expect a bit of leaf yellowing.
  • Lack of nutrients. A plant that is not receiving enough of its preferred fertilizer can reward you with yellowing leaves.
  • Overwatering. Too much water will stress any plant, even those who like to be kept moist!
  • Pests. Lots of creepy crawlies love Hibiscus, so if you are noticing yellow leaves then check the plant for insect infestations.

Why Are My Hibiscus Leaves Turning Yellow With Black Spots?

The leaves of Hibiscus are generally a glossy, gorgeous green, so if they are starting to discolor you will want to know why!

  • Stress. If your plant has got too hot or cold, or has recently been repotted, you may notice some discoloration. If this is the reason, it should resolve itself with time.
  • Fungal infection. If your Hibiscus gets stressed or is not properly cared for, it can be vulnerable to fungus. This is usually easily treated with a natural, organic fungicide.
  • Insect infestation. Black spots on the leaves that can be wiped off can be a sign of the sooty mould that grows on honeydew that aphids and scale bugs leave behind. You will need to treat your plant for these parasites.
  • Chlorosis. This is a fancy name for a condition which basically means your Hibiscus isn’t getting enough nutrients. You may need to up your fertilizer game if this is the case!

Your Hibiscus plant, when all of its needs are met, should be strong enough to withstand any infection and retain its lovely green leaves.

If your Hibiscus leaves are changing color, the first step is to work out its environment and ensure it is getting the right conditions.

Why Are My Hibiscus Buds Falling Off?

Why Are My Hibiscus Buds Falling Off

It is very disappointing to have brought your Hibiscus plant on all its life – only to see the precious flower buds falling off before they’ve bloomed.

There are quite a few reasons why this could be happening, and quite a few things that you can do about it too.


Especially Thrips, some critters feed on the flower buds of Hibiscus, causing them to die off before they have bloomed.

A good dose of some organic insecticide will sort out the problem easily.

Too dry

Hibiscus does like to be kept moist, so if it doesn’t get enough water you will notice your buds dropping off.

Give the plant a really good watering regime; twice a week when there is no rain, and every other day in hot weather.


Although Hibiscus likes to be kept warm, a sudden and unexpected hot spell can stress the plant and cause the buds to drop off.

Although you can’t alter the weather, you can give your Hibiscus a little more shade to help it stay cooler.

Not enough space

If your Hibiscus is kept in a pot, it may become root bound and the flowers will not bloom.

Repot your Hibiscus into a larger pot, and you should notice a difference in the flowers, after the initial “settling in” period.

How To Get Rid Of Aphids On Hibiscus?

Aphids can be a really sticky problem that affect a great many different plants by feeding on the sap. However, it is relatively easy to get rid of them!

  • Spray your Hibiscus with the hose pipe every other day. Streams of water will drown the aphids.
  • Apply nematodes. These are creatures that feed on other creatures, and can be ladybirds, green lacewings, parasitic wasps, and aphid midges.
  • Use Neem oil. This natural oil has been used as a pest control for many years – it won’t harm the plant, but it will get rid of the pesky parasites.
  • Diatomaceous earth. This is made from ground up Silica, and its minute sharp edges will slice into the bodies of the aphids.
  • Keep bed clean. Tidying up your flower beds is a great way to prevent any eggs from previous year’s aphids from getting to your precious plants.
  • Use chemical pesticides. This should be a last resort, but if nothing else is working and your Hibiscus are not coping with the aphids then you can apply some chemicals. Just make sure it is organic, and as natural as you can get it!

Aphids are a pain for many plants, but they don’t have to mean the end for your green friend.

Getting rid of aphids CAN be tricky, but it can also be easy to rid your plant of pests – for the benefit of it and of you!

Here is a video that will show you some of the best ways of removing aphids and other critters from your Hibiscus:

Why Is My Hibiscus Dying?

Dry soil is the biggest factor in a Hibiscus that is not thriving well. These plants need to be kept constantly moist.

Getting cold is another of Hibiscus’ biggest enemies – these tropical plants need to be kept warm, so if the temperature drops they will not cope well.

Lack of nutrients is another culprit for killing Hibiscus – these plants need a lot of feeding, and not enough nutrients will kill them off pretty quickly.

A pest infestation is also responsible for Hibiscus plants dying. Check the whole plant, especially the underside of the leaves, for hidden critters that may be damaging your plant.

Now that you have a better idea about how to keep your Hibiscus healthy, you can enjoy this beautiful plant and its lovely blooms for longer.

2 thoughts on “Common Hibiscus Problems {Explained!}”

    • Firstly, you need to establish WHY your plant is looking sick. If it is over or underwatering then this is fairly easy to fix, whereas if it is a disease or an infestation this can be harder to sort out. Find the cause, then look for solutions!


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