How to Plant and Grow Rose of Sharon

Close on a purple and red Rose of Sharon blossom.
  • 1-2 hours
  • Beginner
  • 20-30
What You'll Need
Rose of Sharon plant

Also known as Hibiscus Syriacus, Rose of Sharon is a lovely, ornamental deciduous shrub that blooms in the summer months, growing to a height of 8 to 10 feet. It requires minimal maintenance, grows slowly, and has a natural resistance to pests. For these reasons, it is a favorite among both hobby and master gardeners. The Rose of Sharon flower has a tropical appearance. Blooms are in shades of pinks, whites, blues, and purples. Planting is a fairly easy task that will only take you a little time. Once completed, you will enjoy your new addition for years to come.

Step 1 - Determine Planting Location

Find the best place for your Rose of Sharon plant. It likes full sun but also does well in a partially shady area. Don’t crowd it too much because it needs room to grow.

TIP: Our expert gardening advisor, Susan Patterson recommends, "If you are planting a hedge, space plants at least 6 feet apart to allow plenty of room for growth."

Step 2 - Dig the Hole

With your shovel, dig to the depth of the root system of the plant and two to three times as wide as the transplanting pot.

Step 3 - Transplant the Bush

Gently tap the container on the ground until the roots and soil loosen up a bit. Carefully remove the plant from its container and place it upright in the ground. Before you refill the hole, fill it with water and let the plant absorb the water completely.

TIP: Susan suggests, "Check to be sure that the shrub is not root bound before you plant. If roots are tight and twisted, try to cut them a little to loosen up the ball."

Step 4 - Refill the Hole

Use the dirt you dug out to refill the hole. Make sure the plant becomes secured in the refilled dirt. Gently tamp down the dirt to stabilize the Rose of Sharon. Water it again until the ground around the plant is soaked.

Step 5 - Apply mulch

Liberally apply mulch or other organic fertilizer around the stem in an area large enough to cover the disturbed dirt. Apply mulch to a depth of 2 to 3 inches all the way around the plant.

TIP: Susan cautions, "Do not allow mulch to touch the stem of the shrub."

Step 6 - Do Regular Maintenance

Now that your Rose of Sharon plant is in the ground, you need to water it frequently, but be careful not to over-water it. A waterlogged plant will begin to show yellow leaves because you are suffocating the roots. The soil should drain well. If drainage becomes a problem, you can transplant the Rose of Sharon to an area that drains properly. Try mixing peat moss into the soil to increase drainage.

The Rose of Sharon does not need to be watered daily. Keep an eye on the soil to see when it gets too dry. When the plant is young, water it three times weekly. As it matures, reduce it to two times weekly. A well-established plant might survive with one good weekly watering, although that will depend largely on the region in which you live. If you get a lot of rain, let nature do the work.

TIP: Susan advises, "If Japanese beetles bother your plant, dust weekly with diatomaceous earth for organic pest control."