Hibiscus plants, with their attractive flowers, are popular in many gardens and landscaping designs. Unfortunately, the flowers and foliage are also appealing to other creatures (both domesticated and wild). When these animals take a nibble out of your beloved plants, it can really damage the health and beauty of your garden.
Several types of insects, including aphids, scales, mites, nematodes and thrips, enjoy the hibiscus plant. You may see the actual bugs or the tiny holes they leave on the plant's flowers and leaves.
You may be worried about wild creatures attacking your plants, but your own pet dog may also be tempted to take a bite out of your hibiscus flowers. Some gardeners recommend spraying the plants with pepper spray to deter this behavior.
If you live in a suburban area that's close to a forest, deer may stumble onto your property and eat your hibiscus flowers or new shoots. An animal as large as a deer can quickly eat an entire plant. Consider building a large fence around your garden or putting up chicken wire to prevent this from occurring.
Groundhogs, sometimes known as woodchucks, enjoy eating hibiscus and are small enough to crawl under fences. You can protect your plants with chemical sprays (however, many sprays are detrimental to hibiscus) or a net.
While turtles may seem unlikely suspects, they enjoy snacking on the leaves of hibiscus plants. You can install a low fence to prevent access to your garden. There are also commercial reptile deterrent products. If you do stumble across a turtle, you can easily trap and relocate the animal.