Growing Rose Of Sharon

Rose oF Sharon

Rose of Sharon is a highly adaptable and easy-to-grow shrub with large double blooms.

Rose of Sharon is a deciduous low maintenance shrub that is native to India and China with showy and exotic blooms that are red, purple, pink, blue, and white with a red at the base of each petal that make an interesting pattern depending on the variety.

They are in the hibiscus family of flowering plants but this unique shrub naturally grows in cooler regions than other tropical hibiscus shrubs.

In some areas it is considered an invasive species, if this is the case in your area then you can purchase a sterile variety.

PLANTING ROSE OF SHARON

Rose of Sharon is best planted in hardiness zone 5 through 9 and in full sun but they can thrive in partial shade with fewer blooms and grow at a slower pace.

To create a row of hedges or in groups, they are best planted 2 to 3 feet apart for proper coverage.

When planting it is best to make the hole twice as wide as the root ball.

Using a hand trowel or garden knife break up the bottom of the root ball and place it in the hole.

Before filling in the hole it is recommended to mix in some compost to add nutrients and to help with water retention.

Mulch can be added for extra water retention as well as aesthetics.

FERTILIZING AND WATERING

Rose of Sharon is best fertilized in the spring with granular fertilizer for roses or a homemade liquid fertilizer.

It is best to give them around one inch of water per week and they become drought tolerant when they are well established.

MULCHING

Mulching rose of Sharon will help the soil retain water which will reduce the amount of time it takes to water them.

The thickness of the mulch is best around 2 inches deep which will also help to prevent weeds from growing around your shrub.

It is best to add new mulch every year as the older mulch breaks down.

BLOOMS

Rose Of Sharon Bloom

Their large blooms can be about four inches across in purple, pink, red, blue, white, and multicolored blooms.

They are a late summer producer of hibiscus blooms that can be up to four inches across.

During the day the blooms are open but they close for the night.

The blooms on the majority of rose of Sharon’s are trumpet-shaped with five petals and a large pistil.

In October the blooms will wilt and go to seed which becomes winter food for birds such as wrens, tufted titmice, and goldfinches.

When their blooms become wilted you can remove them which will cause the plant to rebloom.

This is called deadheading and when the blooms are not able to go to seed, the plant will rebloom to produce seeds.

PRUNING

Rose of Sharon is a shrub but it can be pruned to look more like a tree with one main trunk and a crown or canopy.

They require little to no pruning but it should be done from late winter to early spring and only up to one-third of the plant would be removed in one growing season.

Pruning in the winter or early spring will reduce the chance of a loss of buds in the new growth.

Heavy pruning will reduce the number of blooms but the ones that appear will be larger.

PROPAGATING

Rose of Sharon can easily be propagated by taking some cuttings of new growth that is around 3 to 4 inches long.

Leaving the top few sets of leaves, dip the cut end in water then root tone and plant the cutting.

It is also recommended to sprinkle root tone in the hole with the plant before filling it in.

Another method is to place the cut end on a paper towel, sprinkle some root tone on the cut end and roll up the paper towel and plant the cutting.

PESTS

The most common pest that bothers rose of Sharon is Japanese beetles but there are other pests to keep an eye out for.

  • Aphids
  • Japanese beetles
  • Nematodes

DISEASES

Rose of Sharon is a hardy and robust shrub that can have some common issues if its conditions are inadequate.

If this is the case then pruning and preventive measures may need to be taken.

  • Bacterial leaf spot
  • Root rot
  • Gray mold
  • Hibiscus chlorotic ringspot virus

OVERWINTERING

Overwintering rose of Sharon in hardiness zones of five and lower will need a layer of mulch that is 3 to 5 inches deep to insulate the roots from the cold winter temperatures.

VARIETIES

There are over 15 different varieties to choose from to make your garden or yard pop with large colorful blooms.

BLUE ROSE OF SHARON

Blue rose of Sharon is known for its lacy blooms that helped it to win the award of garden merit from the Royal Horticultural Society.

  • Shrub size – grows to about 12 feet tall and 6 feet wide
  • Sun requirements – full sun to partial shade
  • Soil pH – 5.5 through 7.5
  • Drought tolerant – yes
  • Blooming colors – trumpet-shaped pale blue blooms with a star-like Burgandy color at the base of the petals. Their blooms are about 4 inches across and appear in mid-July lasting into early September.
  • Blooms attract – bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds
  • Foliage – dark green foliage with three lobes at the end of the leaf and are 2 to 4 inches long
  • Deer resistant – yes
  • also known as – Blue Chiffon rose of Sharon

BLUEBERRY SMOOTHIE ROSE OF SHARON

Blueberry smoothie rose of Sharon is a variety that has blooms with extra petals called double-flowered.

This double flowering makes for nice showy and textured blooms.

  • Shrub size – grows to about 8 feet tall and 4 feet wide
  • Sun requirements – full sun to partial shade
  • Soil pH – 5.5 through 7.5
  • Drought tolerant – yes
  • Blooming colors – bluish-purple double blooms that appear in mid-July and last into early September. They produce a saucer shape bloom that is 3 to 5 inches across with overlapping ruffled petals.
  • Blooms attract – bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds
  • Foliage – green foliage with three lobes at the end of the leaf and are 2 to 4 inches long
  • Deer resistant – yes
  • also known as – blueberry smoothie althea

MINERVA ROSE OF SHARON

Minerva rose of Sharon is bushy with long-lasting blooms and foliage that has a leathery feel to it.

Pruning them back by about 2 or 3 leaves in late winter will make for larger blooms for the following summer and fall.

  • Shrub size – grows to about 8 feet tall and 7 feet wide
  • Sun requirements – full sun to partial shade
  • Soil pH – 5.5 through 7.5
  • Drought tolerant – yes
  • Blooming colors – trumpet-shaped purple blooms that have a slight ruffle, appear in mid-July and last into early September, and produce little to no seeds. The center of the bloom has a spot of dark reddish-purple color that forms the shape of a star.
  • Blooms attract – bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds
  • Foliage – green foliage with jagged edges that start about one-third up from the base of the leaf
  • Deer resistant – yes
  • also known as – minerva althea

APHRODITE ROSE OF SHARON

Aphrodite rose of Sharon is a bushy shrub that can get as wide as it is tall with delicate pink blooms.

  • Shrub size – grows to about 10 feet tall and 6 feet wide
  • Sun requirements – full sun to partial shade
  • Soil pH – 5.5 through 7.5
  • Drought tolerant – yes
  • Blooming colors – trumpet-shaped pink blooms that appear in mid-July and last into early September
  • Blooms attract – bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds
  • Foliage – green foliage with three jagged lobes
  • Deer resistant – yes
  • also known as – aphrodite althea

PURPLE PILLAR ROSE OF SHARON

Purple pillar rose of Sharon is a tall and narrow variety that offers semi-double blooms.

  • Shrub size – grows to about 16 feet tall and 3 feet wide
  • Sun requirements – full sun to partial shade
  • Soil pH – 5.5 through 7.5
  • Drought tolerant – yes
  • Blooming colors – trumpet-shaped light purple blooms with some red at the base of the petal which makes for an interesting pattern on the bloom. Their blooms appear in mid-July and last into early September.
  • Blooms attract – bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds
  • Foliage – green foliage with three jagged lobes
  • Deer resistant – yes
  • also known as – aphrodite althea

LOW TO NO SEED VARIETIES

These low to now seed varieties are great for those who live in areas that consider rose of Sharon to be an invasive species but still want to enjoy their beauty. It is still suggested to deadhead the blooms to discourage seeds and encourage more blooms.

SUGAR TIP GOLD ROSE OF SHARON

Sugar tip gold rose of Sharon is a medium-sized shrub that can get up to 5 feet tall and 5 feet wide that produces pink blooms.

PLOOYPETITE ROSE OF SHARON

Plooypetite rose of Sharon is a medium-sized shrub that can get up to 4 feet tall and 4 feet wide that produces purple blooms.

AZURRI BLUE SATIN ROSE OF SHARON

Azurri blue satin rose of Sharon is a large-sized shrub that can get up to 12 feet tall and 6 feet wide that produces blue blooms.

ORCHID SATIN ROSE OF SHARON

Orchid satin rose of Sharon is a medium-sized shrub that can get up to 8 feet tall and 10 feet wide that produces purple blooms.

PURPLE SATIN ROSE OF SHARON

Purple satin rose of Sharon is a large-sized shrub that can get up to 12 feet tall and 8 feet wide that produces dark purple blooms.