Q: I just planted two small hibiscus plants outside this early fall
season, and something has cut off (or eaten) all the small branches
and leaves from the plant. Are there any animals or birds that would
Hardiness Zone: 6a
Donna from Sterling Heights, MI
It sounds like you have deer in your neighborhood. As days grow shorter in the fall, it's common for them to leave the woods in search of food. They happen to love hibiscus. Whether yours will come back again in the spring depends on how much damage was done and whether the plants had enough to time to settle in and establish good roots.
Here is an organic recipe for repelling deer:
Mix this with one gallon of water and apply with a spray bottle every 1 to 2 weeks (and after rain). Unfortunately, during times when food is in short supply, deer will eat just about anything and repellants become less effective.
I hate to tell you but I don't think your hibiscus will last out the winter in Michigan. I believe they cannot stand weather below 40 and I, too,live in the Detroit area. So, my advice is dig them up, bring them in the house, water and enjoy all winter and you can put them out next spring. (10/17/2005)
Deer are famous for eating Hibiscus and they also love hoyas and other ground covers. (10/18/2005)
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