The cold weather is finally ending and everything is sprouting – everything that is except one or two of your hibiscus plants that look like bare sticks. You’re afraid that they’re dead, but you carefully scrape back a little bit of the bark with your fingernail and see firm, green wood. So the “stick” is still alive! But it just sits there, hovering somewhere between life and death. What to do now?
Gibberellins – Nature’s Wake-Up Call
What your plant needs now is a helping of plant growth hormones that signal to the plant that it’s time to form branches, leaves and flowers. Usually a plant will produce enough of these hormones on its own, but sometimes when a plant is in less-than-peak condition, it’s unable to do so. That’s when we can help Nature by adding these hormones artificially. One of the best hormones to bring hibiscus out of this dormant condition is gibberellic acid, which is the main ingredient in the our HVH Wake-up Spray. We have tested this method ourselves on “stick” plants with surprisingly good results. It may not help every ailing hibiscus, but if your plants are struggling, it’s sure worth a try. The spray is especially useful for plants damaged by winter cold exposure, but works equally well for plants damaged by lack of water, overexposure to heat and sun, or a bad insect infestation.
To pull a hibiscus out of dormancy, spray the leaves (or just the stick if that’s all there is) heavily with Wake-Up Spray 2-3 times per week. Keep doing this for anywhere for 2-6 weeks. You’ll see tiny green buds beginning to sprout. Keep spraying the entire until plant until you see tiny leaves beginning to grow. As soon as you see two small leaves develop, STOP spraying that part of the plant. Too much gibberellic acid will cause weak spindly growth. Once each node has 2 leaves, the plant can start growing well on its own.
Our Wake-Up Spray offers the best chance to revive a “dead stick” hibiscus, or any plant that is mostly dormant due to cold exposure, heavy spider mite attack, or fungus disease that has been fought off but left the plant struggling. Wake-Up Spray contains a form of gibberellic acid that stimulates new growth in plants. We have successfully used commercial grower products containing gibberellic acid numerous times over the years, and we are pleased to be able to offer this product in a ready to use spray bottle. Each year we work to improve the formula of our HVH Wake-Up Spray based on our own use for hibiscus in our greenhouses, in our outside gardens, and our inside houseplants. Wake-Up Spray can be sprayed inside a house, and will not stain wood, walls, or furniture.