Plant Survival

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

My hibiscus was heavily infested with mealy bugs. In fact, most of its leaves were gone. But I was so glad to see that the plant has re-bloomed although the flower is now much smaller in size. All in the plant took about 4 months to recover and rebloom!



The white flies that infested my Mexican Sunflower left. But below were the last few blooms...





Although not infested by white flies, the fate of my cosmos turn out to be the same.




Both the Mexican Sunflower and Cosmos Bright Eyes grew to be quite tall. Later when the old leaves dried up the plants did not look nice anymore. Hence, I discarded them to make room for new plants. Between the two, I like the Mexican Sunflower more as their flowers were really striking!

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20 comments

  1. Stephanie, white flies are a menace! They infested my pink hibiscus too. I bathed the infected parts with an infusion of tobacco leaves. The white flies have gone now.

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  2. Well I think I said it befor but I will repeat myself, lovely, stricking, orange colour!!
    Sad with those flies..

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  3. That's one thing about the hibs. I get them too. But the bloom is gorgeous! And your assorted blooms are ever so pretty!

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  4. Your hibiscus is stunning! I just realized that my garden plants rarely get invaded by insects. I guess that's one advantage of living in the desert.

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  5. Diane AZ maybe right, our humidity in Asia predisposes our plants to lots of insects and diseases. Steph, your Hibiscus, sunflower and cosmos are hosts to the same insect so they should not be planted in the same area, or else you will really have big problems. Besides both sunflower and cosmos are photoperiodic plants which have same requirements, so they grow big before they flower when requirements to flowering are not met soon in their lives. You will notice that they flower earlier during the colder months because we have shorter days.

    These insects are also vectors of viruses, hibiscus is not spared. If you see that the leaves are already mottling or curling, its time to burn them fully discarding the soil in the pot, or else your other plants might be contaminated. Virus is not a joke! hehe.

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  6. Wow, a blushing hibiscus! Where else would golden yellow make such a lovely combination with shocking pink, but in a flower?:))
    And, pardon my curiosity, what's that plant with the pink flowers next to your Mexican Sunflower?

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  7. Shailaja, that's Chinese fringe flower ;-) The plant gave me a big surprise with those blooms after a prune.

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  8. The white flies and mealy bugs are indeed my enemies. They have murdered 2 of my kalanchoes and now a colony of them seem to love my spatho orchids too.

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  9. Your Hibiscus look pretty!
    Yesterday after fighting so long with so many pest (aphids, mealy bug, 50 - 80 caterpillar), i decided to use pesticide! i knw that i will kill good bugs too but i was left with no choice! sigh.....

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  10. Mealybugs have murdered most of my sarracenias. Spider mites are nightmares too, since they attacked my hibiscus, rose and elephant ear. I just gave my roses and hibiscus a heavy bath yesterday to wash away all those insects!

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  11. I sure get frustrated when bugs want to eat my plants....it is good that you can have a good outlook and keep plugging along. I am trying to figure out how to keep mice away right now. ARGGG!!
    Your Cosmos were a nice color though.

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  12. Steph: if you plant cosmos and sunflower in new soil and feed them well, they will grow very very tall, sometime full of leaves with few flowers, especially on the cosmos. My experience is to plant these in "old" soil, and don't feed them until they start budding.

    By the way, have you started forcing your amaryllis bulbs yet? How is it going?

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  13. Hi Steph. Luckily Hibiscus is a pretty tough plant! I grow Tithonia diversifolia (same genus as your Mexican sunflower). It has large yellow flowers and grows 12 feet tall (very impressive.

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  14. It is a real nuisance when uninvited guests come and try to establish a colony on your prized plants. I am at war with grasshoppers they are voracious, eat all my Basil and the Rose leaves and buds; grrrr... I like the Mexican Sunflower too, the colour is brilliant. Also love Cosmos in pink and white, have never planted the yellow ones. The Hibiscus looks pretty a colour I like very much.

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  15. what a gorgeous hibiscus. Looks like some creative kid made it up.

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  16. Ha Xuan, not yet. Still waiting for six good leaves. Thanks for remembering! I have some new sunflower seedlings growing now, your advice on feeding is timely, thanks!

    Wendy, watch out for my canna lily later. The bloom really looked one handicraft!

    All, I hope you have had a good weekend. It is really nice to read of your comments/thoughts. Looks like I am not alone in dealing with 'uninvited guests' he he... Nonetheless, happy gardening!

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  17. Beautiful, beautiful hibiscus! I really love its colors! While living in a condo means limited gardening space, it also means limited problems with pests :)

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  18. Andrea, oh yes, virus is no joke! Thanks for your kind advice.

    Diane, Sandy, so nice to know that pests don't disturb your garden. I would love to live in such a place. Have a great day!

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  19. I guess its time-up for those plants.
    Probably the best option is to discard them and replant them again.
    (except for your hibiscus - hope it recover soon)

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  20. I love the Mexican flower! Your last picture is really good :)

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