When you work with certain plants, you might develop rashes on your body. After you have been working with the hibiscus plant, and notice a red, itchy rash on your arms, it is important to explore the various causes of the rash. Hibiscus on its own will generally not cause rashes, according to Jerry Stanely at Allergy Free Gardening, but there are other ways for hibiscus to cause a rash.
Hibiscus Rash due to Allergies
Examine your rash very carefully. It could be a raised, bumpy rash due to an allergy to the plant. The hibiscus plant does not generally cause any type of skin irritation, unless you are allergic to hibiscus itself. If you have a hibiscus allergy, you might experience rashes wherever the plant has touched your body.
Handle this minor allergy by taking some antihistamine and making sure that the rash goes away within a few hours. If the rash gets worse or you have trouble breathing get to a doctor immediately as this could be signs of a major allergic reaction.
If you believe that you are allergic to the hibiscus plant, it is best to remove the plant from your home or your outdoor garden. If you cannot remove it or do not want to remove it, do not have any unprotected contact with the leaves of the plant.
Hibiscus Rash Due to Other Causes
Check your rash for signs of other causes. It might not be that you are allergic to the hibiscus itself, but that something on the plant caused your reaction.
If the rash is a series of small, itchy bumps that are not connected, it could be insect bites from bugs that are on your plant. Treat your hibiscus plant for insects with an insecticide or indoor plant bug killer, and wash your plant with a pressure washer to remove any of the pests that are on it.
If your plant does not have an infestation, it could be that you are allergic to a chemical that was previously used on the plant. Change the type of fertilizer or insecticide you use on the plant, and see if your rash goes away.
If your plant is outdoors check in and around the plant to make sure another kind of plant (such as poison ivy) is not entangled with your hibiscus. This second plant may be the culprit and you may be allergic to it instead of the hibiscus.
Before you move your hibiscus plant indoors, or do any more pruning with it, wash it completely with a pressure washer and a plant wash solution. Cut your plant back to just a few inches above the ground, which will remove any of the pests from it.