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Zebrina Hollyhock Mallow

Zebrina Hollyhock Mallow

Malva sylvestris 'Zebrina'


1-Quart
Item # 43931

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Few plants offer the long-lasting rewards of this heirloom Hollyhock Mallow! Not only is it floriferous over a very long season, but it self-sows, replenishing itself year after year in your sunny border. Beautiful pinwheel blooms in two shades of purple are breathtaking, and butterflies visit them regularly. Who could possibly ask for more?

Zebrina has graced cottage gardens for many years, and it's easy to see why. The 2-inch single blooms begin opening in midsummer in most climates, and continue right into fall, often continuing for 4 months or more. A soft shade of lavender, they are heavily veined with maroon-violet, creating a stripey, pinwheeled look that is just a little different on every bloom. Striking!

Butterflies and hummingbirds pay their respects to these blooms on a daily basis, but rabbits tend to leave the plant un-nibbled, which is a surprise and a pleasure. The flowering stalks are about 2½ feet high on compact, mounding plants that can reach 3 to 4 feet tall but just 18 to 24 inches wide. Zebrina is a good choice for the middle or back of the sunny border, where its dark green foliage serves as background for shorter plants, and its absolute MASSES of blooms can stand out brilliantly.

M. sylvestris is a rather short-lived perennial, but Zebrina has solved this problem by coming true from seed. Just let the the last blooms remain on the plant each fall, and in spring you'll see new little sprouts everywhere. Such a marvelous gift from a plant that will become your favorite the very first season you grow it!

Best of all, Zebrina is much more tolerant of hot weather than most Hollyhock Mallows, and demonstrates excellent resistance to disease. It grows readily in full sun and nearly any type of soil. Your sunny garden (not to mention your vases!) deserves this plant! Zones 4-8.

Review Summary
(Based on 1 Reviews)

Overall Rating: 5.0 / 5.0

Reviews

Malva Sylvestris
MaryKay from IN wrote on August 23, 2012:

a lovely plant in habit, color. Its sweet and demure personality belies its toughness. It grew in the area of my Philadelphia, (PA) garden with the worst, dry soil and asked for no special treatment.

  • Butterflies like a lot of sunlight, so locate your garden in a sunny area.
  • If you live in a windy location, plant your butterfly-attracting plants near a building, fence, or hedge to protect them.
  • Plant a variety of nectar-rich plants, as well as shrubs and evergreens for shelter.
  • Since many butterflies and native flowering plants have co-evolved, try to put in some that are native to your area. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildlife Center provides lists of plants native to states and regions.
  • Certain colors are particularly attracting to butterflies – red, yellow, pink, purple, or orange blooms that are clustered or flat-topped, with a short flower tubes are especially attractive to adult butterflies.
  • Avoid using pesticides, especially around nectar-producing plants.
  • Provide a shallow source of water – try a birdbath with pebbles lining the bowl.
  • Place a rock in a sunny spot for butterfly basking and resting.
  • Create a "puddling area" by digging a shallow hole filled with compost or manure where rainwater will collect and release essential salts and minerals.
  • If you want butterflies to breed in your garden, put in some caterpillar food plants, such as parsley, milkweeds, asters, thistles, violets, clover, grasses, and Queen Anne’s Lace.
  • Since butterflies need nectar throughout the entire adult phase of their lives, try to create a design that will allow for a continuous bloom – when one stops blooming, another starts.
Malva moschata and sylvestris
Mallow

Planting:

Set plants, 2 feet apart in full sun to light shade and a well-drained soil.


Maintenance:

Keep well- watered during the summer growing season.


Zones:

Zones 4-8

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Tips for gardening in particularly hot, dry climates:


1. Water with a drip system whenever possible – soak the bed slowly and thoroughly to a depth of 10" to 12".

2. Watering deeply every 3 to 5 days is preferable to a shallow daily watering.

3. Water in the early morning, so foliage has time to dry.

4. Add a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch or similar material to aid in water retention and help keep the roots cool during hot weather.