Monday, June 15, 2009

Malva sylvestris

Malvas are great garden plants, happiest in full sun, but tolerant of light shade. They can be anywhere from 8 inches tall to probably 3 feet. Flowers are up and down the stem and they will bloom off and on from early summer until frost. They are perennial and also will seed. I grew them for the first time about 25 years ago and dug some up and brought them with me when I moved to Ohio. The one above is one of those, Malva sylvestris ' Zebrina'. It was the only one I grew for many years, at least until I discovered some seed for 2 other varieties.
The one below is 'Mystic Merlin'. Not all that much different from the one above, just a bit more red in the purple. Flower size and every thing else is quite the same.

The third one I grow, or grew (maybe), since it doesn't seem to be up yet and blooming although the others are, is 'Primley Blue'. I think this one might be my favorite. It is even more blue than shows in this picture.

As far as a source, Thompson and Morgan carries the seed. I'm not sure if anyone is selling plants, but when they are so easy from seed, it is a much more economical way to have some.


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