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Transform Your Garden: Hand-Picked Hibiscus Fertilizers

Hibiscus requires full sun and proper fertilizer amendment in well-draining soil to showcase its prized vibrant pink, red or yellow flowers with lush green leaves.

Generally, Hibiscus prefers diluted liquid fertilizer alongside weekly watering. They are susceptible to nutrient swings and require Potassium more than Nitrogen or Phosphorus. So, feed both Hibiscus in pots or grounds with the best organic fertilizer of 12-4-8 or 17-5-24 NPK ratio.

Remember, Hibiscus shows various telltale signs whenever the soil lacks any one of the essential nutrients.

Thus, read till the end to learn the best fertilizer for Hibiscus, what signs to look out for and how to prepare ideal homemade fertilizer.

Signs Your Hibiscus Has Fertilizer Issues

Hibiscus is an easy, fast-growing flowering plant that attains 8-16 feet tall with a spread of 5-10 feet.

But to achieve such a feat, they require proper care and growing nourishment.

yellowing hibiscus from nutrient deficiency
Yellowing leaves of the Hibiscus signify a lack of nutrients in the soil.

Furthermore, Hibiscus are heavy feeders that need regular fertilization to stay happy and green.

Thus, when you fail to meet their nutrient needs, plants will show various signs of distress.

Lacking NutrientSigns in Hibiscus
PotassiumLack of bloom, pale bloom color, spindly wood
NitrogenLeaf chlorosis between the green veins
IronChlorotic new leaves at the end of the stems
MagnesiumYellow leaves, loss of gloss and chlorosis but with dark green veins

In addition to these signs, nutrient-deficient Hibiscus often has stunted or poor growth with no signs of flowering.

Meanwhile, excess nutrient content in the soil, like too much Phosphorus, results in stunted growth and yellowing leaves.

Likewise, too much nitrogen causes fertilizer burn leading to brown spots or brown leaf edges.

How Often To Fertilize Hibiscus?

Depending on the season and type of fertilizer you use, fertilization frequency for Hibiscus can vary.

Hibiscus are perennial flowering plants that actively unfurl new leaves in Spring and produce vibrant flowers from late Spring through fall.

Thus, fertilize Hibiscus every week or every time you water them using a weak liquid fertilizer solution in the active season.

However, abstain from fertilizing Hibiscus in dormant winter months to avoid overfertilization issues.

Now, depending upon the type of fertilizer, you should fertilize Hibiscus, as mentioned below.

  • Liquid: Diluted fertilizer every week
  • Slow Release or Organic Compost: Four times per year, i.e., early Spring, after flowering ends, midsummer and fall or early winter.
  • Granular: Every 2-3 weeks

Remember, Hibiscus is very sensitive to nutrient swings, so try to develop a regular fertilization routine to keep nutrient level stable.

Furthermore, fertilize your indoor potted Hibiscus less often than the outdoor Hibiscus in the active season.

What is the Best Commercial Hibiscus Fertilizer?

Before buying fertilizer for your Hibiscus on a whim, remember not all fertilizers meet the preference of Hibiscus.

Also, Hibiscus profusely thrives in slightly acidic fertilizers, so choosing an alkaline one would just backfire.

But worry not! I have scoured the present market and enlisted some of the best fertilizers for your Hibiscus.

1. Carl Pool Hibiscus Plant Food

With over 4.6 rating from 1,670 ratings, Carl Pool Hibiscus plant food is one of the top-rated fertilizers for Hibiscus.

It is a granular fertilizer that delivers 10-4-12 NPK and features high Sulfur for optimal pH levels.

The plant food contains more Potassium than the other three nutrients, making it ideal for the Hibiscus plant.

Product Specification

Quantity4 lbs
NPK Ratio10-4-12
Where to Buy?Amazon


  • Features a high percentage of Potassium with low Phosphorus content with other necessary micro and macro-nutrients.
  • Boosts Hibiscus flowering alongside better foliage growth.
  • Does not have any particular obnoxious odor.


  • It is precisely for Hibiscus, so it might not work for other flowering plants.

2. Miracle-Gro Plant Food

It is one of the best-selling plant food from Miracle-Gro, specifically for acid-loving plants like Hibiscus.

Besides the first three nutrients, the fertilizer includes Iron and other essential nutrients.

As it is a water-soluble fertilizer, immediate effects within a couple of days can be seen in the plants after use.

Product Specification

TypeWater Soluble
Quantity1.5 lbs
NPK Ratio30-30-16
Where to Buy?Amazon


  • Immediate, effective results
  • Easy to use
  • Best for acid-loving plants


  • Not suitable for organic gardening

3. Nelson Plant Food

Another fertilizer that is produced explicitly for the Hibiscus plant is the Nelson plant food.

The 10-4-12 NPK ratio of the fertilizer is best suited for the growth and flowering of the Hibiscus.

Product Specification

Quantity2 lbs
NPK Ratio10-4-12
Where to Buy?Amazon


  • Aligns with the Hibiscus plant’s fondness for Potassium
  • Suitable for both indoor Hibiscus in a pot or outdoor plants


  • Relatively expensive than other fertilizers

4. Burpee Natural Purpose

It is an all-purpose fertilizer with a balanced 4-4-4 NPK ratio and, more importantly, is suitable for organic gardening.

As a slow-release type of fertilizer, it smartly releases nutrients in the soil without causing excess nutrient buildup.

Product Specification

Quantity4 lbs
NPK Ratio4-4-4
Where to Buy?Amazon


  • Organic fertilizer without fertilizer burn threats
  • Easy to use
  • Suitable for all types of houseplants


  • Not readily available in the stores

5. Purely Organic Products

As the name suggests, the spikes are 100% organic and are prepared from molasses and soy protein to promote vigorous root growth.

It promises that one spike is sufficient and can ensure the optimal growth of the three feet tall plants.

Product Specification

Quantity6 Spikes
NPK Ratio7-0-2
Where to Buy?Amazon


  • Suitable for organic gardening
  • Does not pose excess fertilizer issues
  • Easy to use


  • Lacks Phosphorus altogether, so it might cause Phosphorus deficiency in the plant.

6. Espoma Organic Palm-tone

Another best fertilizer suitable for Hibiscus is Espoma Organic Palm tone with a 4-1-5 NPK ratio.

Moreover, it features other essential nutrients like magnesium and microorganisms to facilitate better growth.

Product Specification

Quantity4 lbs.
NPK Ratio4-1-5
Where to Buy?Amazon


  • Completely organic and is safe around pets and kids.
  • It has an ideal NPK ratio suitable for Hibiscus.


  • It is not suitable for plants other than palms and Hibiscus.

How to Make Homemade Fertilizer for Hibiscus?

Despite being a heavy feeder, Hibiscus does not fuss about what fertilizer you are giving as long as the fertilizer contains all essential nutrients.

Thus, using the countertop products, you can prepare DIY homemade Hibiscus fertilizer with easy steps.

Moreover, Hibiscus are acid lovers, so casually sprinkling vinegar directly on the soil can do wonders.

1. Banana Peels

To tame the Potassium hunger of Hibiscus, incorporate Banana peels into the soil.

You can prepare Banana Peel Tea by soaking them in water for a day or two or making a slurry by blending them in a mixture.

Directly pour the mixture on the base of the Hibiscus plant without wetting the leaves.

Brewing Banana Peel in Water to Use as Fertilizer
Banana Peel water is an excellent DIY hack to ensure the optimal level of Potassium in the soil for Hibiscus.

Otherwise, chop the Banana peels into smaller pieces, dry them thoroughly and then bury them at least two inches deep underneath the Hibiscus soil.

Alternatively, add eggshells and four tablespoons of Epsom salt to the Banana peels and grind them to make a fine powder. After that, add 75ml of water, mix it well, and feed it to your Hibiscus.

2. Coffee Grounds

Not only Roses but Hibiscus also enjoy the addition of coffee grounds in their soil.

The use of coffee grounds ensures Nitrogen and Potassium at a healthy level without inheriting fertilizer burn issues.

Dry the coffee grounds on a baking sheet in the full afternoon sunlight until crispy and dry.

Then generously sprinkle them on top of the soil in a circular fashion around the plant base.

3. Aquarium Water

If you have a fish tank, then you are in for luck. The dirty, gucky water from the fish tanks is an excellent fertilizer for Hibiscus.

The aquarium water features all primal nutrients alongside other beneficial microorganisms.

Thus, fetch your Hibiscus with aquarium water every week for better, healthier Hibiscus growth.

4. Other DIY Fertilizers

You can also use wood ash, blackstrap molasses and tea leaves as a Hibiscus fertilizer.

However, do not pour DIY fertilizers on the plant leaves, as some can potentially damage and destroy plant leaves.

Meanwhile, apply liquid seaweed fertilizer every one to two weeks for optimal results.

Steps to Fertilize Hibiscus

Fertilizing Hibiscus is easy and involves no extra special steps, especially when using homemade ones.

However, while using commercial chemical fertilizers, you must be cautious to avoid unintentional damage.

  • Add the half-strength diluted liquid fertilizer into the watering can and fetch it whenever the plant is thirsty.
  • Avoid wetting the leaves with fertilizer water while watering.
  • For granular or slow-release fertilizers, sprinkle the fertilizer over the soil, ensuring they are not touching the base stem.
  • Aim to water the plant thoroughly before and after adding granular or slow-release fertilizer.
  • Mix the potting soil with compost when planting the Hibiscus on the pots.
  • Meanwhile, mulch or topdress the soil with homemade composts for outdoor Hibiscus.

From Editors Note

Wear Safety Gear to Stay Safe!

Not all fertilizers are organic, so always wear gloves and glasses to avoid health hazards while fertilizing Hibiscus.

Also, thoroughly clean hands and tools using soap or handwash after fertilizing the plants.