Nothing conjures thoughts of the tropics like a hibiscus flower. Hibiscus produce large, classic-looking flowers in colors ranging from deep red to orange, yellow, ivory, white and all shades in between. Some hibiscus have huge flowers that can grow up to a foot in diameter. Most hibiscus grow best in hardiness zones 8 through 10 and can make a beautiful addition to your garden. The seeds are easy to collect and are equally easy to germinate, with the right treatment. It's important to nick the seed coat to allow moisture to enter into each seed to promote germination. You can then plant your seeds indoors or out, depending on the season, and within a year or two, you can have your first bloom.
Collect your hibiscus seeds from seed pods that result after the flowers have withered. When ready, they will be papery and brittle with the seeds inside.
Watch the pods carefully to plan your gathering. If you collect seeds too early, they may not sprout when planted. Too late, and the pod will already have opened, and the seeds will be gone.
Pick the seed pods from the plant and place them whole in a paper bag. Be sure to label the bag for future reference.
Close the bag and allow it to sit for a couple of weeks in a well-ventilated place. This will allow the seeds to finish ripening.
Remove the seed pods from the bag, once ripened, and place them in a large plastic bowl. Break the pods apart with your hands to release the seeds. Remove any chaff from the seeds.
Separate the seeds and place them in a small, labeled envelope or container until you are ready to plant them. If you use a plastic bag, make sure the seeds are completely dry before storing them; otherwise, they can grow mold.