What can I do about yellowing leaves on my hibiscus plant?

Debbie Zellner
by Debbie Zellner
It started having yellowing leaves a couple of weeks ago. I read where adding vinegar to water will help and I did that. It has gotten worse and I really don't want to loose it. Thank you
Dying hibiscus
  9 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Jul 24, 2017

    Re-pot the Hibiscus and make sure there are drainage holes. FYI never use vinegar on plants.Spray the leaves and soil with horticultural oil.Keep moderately moist and full sun.

    • Debbie Zellner Debbie Zellner on Jul 24, 2017

      Thank you! I just found little red aphid looking bugs on it and sprayed it with natural bug spray. I also just re potted it and pot has two drainage holes. Maybe it was the bugs!

  • Gloria Gloria on Jul 24, 2017

    mix 2 tb of epsom salt into a two gallon watering can with water and add to your pot i believe your plant needs nitrogen which the epsom salt will provide and do this every two weeks

    • Debbie Zellner Debbie Zellner on Jul 24, 2017

      Thank you! I just found little red aphid looking bugs on It. I had some natural bug killer that I sprayed it with. I will try epsom salt also.

  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Jul 24, 2017

    Never, ever use vinegar on plants you want to keep. Hibiscus like water, but not constant wet feet. Make sure when you repot your plant to put gravel or stones in the bottom to help facilitate drainage. I hope your Hibiscus plant comes back to health, they are such beautiful plants. I have four myself and will try to overwinter in my house so I have them for next year.

    • See 1 previous
    • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Jul 25, 2017

      The leaves that are yellow don't look chewed or anything, make sure you get the bottom of all the leaves, that is where you will find most bugs.

  • Just peachy Just peachy on Jul 24, 2017

    Repot the plant after thoroughly washing the pot. Rinse the roots a bit, use fresh potting mix, add a thick layer of compost on top. Try horticultural soap on the leaves, spray under the leaves well. Spray it in the morning every other day. Pests like to attack weak plants. Water the roots well until it starts to come back. Good luck!

  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Jul 24, 2017

    It could have been, just remember that Hibiscus doesn't like wet feet a whole lot. I actually have three of my four in self watering pots so that they draw only what they need and don't refill the reservoirs on a daily basis.

  • Crz23206317 Crz23206317 on Jul 24, 2017

    You are over watering your plant. Let it dry out completely before watering again. And only re- water once it is dry 2 inches down. For most plants you can follow the rule of yellowing from bottom up is too wet, yellowing from top down is too dry.

  • Gloria Gloria on Jul 26, 2017

    debbie if you have aphids on your plant go to a gardening store and ask them what they have for that pest so you don't kill your hibiscus with any insecticide that will harm your plant.aphids multiply like crazy so its best to get rid of them immediately. you may also plant catnip near your plant.aphids don't like catnip

  • Michelle Leslie Michelle Leslie on Jul 05, 2020

    Hi Debbie, not sure if you solved your hibiscus problem, but this site has a whole bunch of tips that might help -


  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Apr 19, 2023

    Check soil for bugs. Refresh with new soil. and re-pot.