You can transplant these seedlings when it gets warm in April. For the best results, sow seeds in individual biodegradable containers. Members of this plant family have a distinctive look, so if you think that Hollyhocks remind you of Hibiscus (like I do), you’re not out of your mind. Sorry you didn't like the foliage. Hi Nettlemere. very close to the surface. Alcea 'Creme de Cassis' Hollyhock Perennial. I continued to come to Norfolk every holiday as we had fallen in love with this beautiful county and every summer I marvelled at the wonderful hollyhocks that we saw everywhere we went. I must try your suggestions. I love hollyhocks, I guess because they bring back such wonderful memories of my grandmother’s farm. The first thing to understand is how to plant hollyhocks. For me here in MD, sowing them in the fall works best. Loved your pictures! An excellent variety for backgrounds, screens and tall accent groups. Then I waited until late August when the hollyhocks are setting seed and then collected some ripe seed from the hollyhocks growing outside the old Blakeney Cottage Company offices, which used to be about halfway up Blakeney high street ( they have since moved to a much larger office at the bottom of the high street on Blakeney Quay) I took my Hollyhock seed home and scattered it on the gravel on the sunny aspect of the cottage garden, and against the house, and I waited and waited. It's best to plant hollyhock seedlings outdoors when they're small, before they develop long taproots that don't transplant well. You can always thin them out again later, if they appear too crowded, and you may lose some of the young hollyhock seedlings, so its always useful to have spares. Hollyhocks can be cut for bouquets and you can even add the petals to salads or crystallise for cake decorations. It will, however, put on a beautiful show during year two. New to this site and thrilled at the wealth of useful information. We never completely get rid of the rust but this method means that the load on the plant is not sufficient to kill it and they still flower spectacularly and our garden is teaming with wildlife as we avoid the use of toxic chemicals. Jill. Be sure to remove as much chaff as you can. If purchasing hollyhock seed, check the date on the packet in order to select the freshest seed available. Should I move the mulch then scatter and mulch over? Question: I planted hollyhock seeds this spring. What do I do with them this fall? Hi embarrett91 -- Luckily, seeds don't cost much, so you can always experiment, and flowers are lots of fun to grow. Thanks for writing a well-written and beautifully laid-out hub on how to grow these. They were growing out of every conceivable crevice and crack in the pavement, and as a very keen cottage gardener, I wanted to be able to grow them in my own garden in Nottinghamshire. It is my first time planting. Hope your hollyhocks do well this year. Life is waiting to happen under our feet! Check out Gardenweb.com for more help. You said to use gibberellic acid for possible same year blooms. Love hollyhock. Let’s look at a few tips on hollyhocks to help you grow them in your yard. Be careful not to weed out your tiny baby hollyhocks. Reply. Appreciate your comments & votes. Mar 7, 2016 - Explore Ilene Wight's board "hollyhock", followed by 164 people on Pinterest. Semi-double and double flowers range in color from pinks, reds, white and yellow. Fingers crossed for that future row of giant hollyhocks! Now it is time to thin them out and just leave the largest healthiest ones. But now I want to replant them in any color. Answer: Do move the mulch but wait until you have sturdy seedlings before mulching around the plants. My husband is so proud!! Alternatively spread the seed onto the ground where you wish them to germinate. On my return home from my holiday I went to our local garden centre and purchased some pot grown ones to grow in my own garden, but sadly they did not thrive and eventually died. Creeping Charlie grows as a prostrate vine, spreading through gardens and yards. Child and dog friendly. To get successful germination the seeds in my experience need to be frosted. The seeds inside the pod will be stuck together, so you'll have to break them apart as well. The beauty of this plant seems like it would make it well worth all the effort. Hi moonlake! A volunteer hollyhock came up - no idea from where. I love that my beautiful hollyhock has such a intriguing (possible) story and has returned to its proper place! Creeping Charlie can be confused with hollyhocks' young, new growth. As recommended previously, for good transplanting results, sow the seeds in individual pots so that transplanting causes less distress to the roots. Reading online that these seeds can remain viable for years if deep and dark in the soil, I wondered if the excavation for my new garden room addition had unearthed a dormant seed. After transplanting seedlings into fertile soil in a sunny spot in the garden, keep the young plants moist. However, when I went to pick the seed pod, I discovered it's very different than the other ones in my yard. My husband just mowed over the biggest, most beautiful one. Sorry. They'd make sweet little decorations for place settings. Any that you manage to pot up and grow on can then be planted into borders later in the season or given away to friends. Voted up and congratulations on HOTD. This is because hollyhocks produce a very deep tap root, which is what makes them so drought resistant and able to grow in crevices in between paving slabs. We will contact you in the autumn when we have seed again. Although the flower spikes are tall and narrow, the base of each plant will form a large mound if enough space is available. The area where it sprouted abuts the alley and it's the most dry, crusty, inhospitable dirt you can imagine; weeds barely grow along that strip of dirt, so you can imagine my surprise when the little "not a weed" plant popped up. Water the seed regularly so that the ground stays moist. Thank you! I also had a section of wild flowers. Some hollyhock varieties are resistant to some, but not all, variants of P. malvacearum. Hollyhock seed also may be directly sown outdoors in early spring. Good to hear from you & thanks, Jill, Hi Giselle. --Jill. useful hub for one to start sowing a garden and reaping a harvest of hollyhocks~. Hollyhock is a really useful and hardy self-seeding plant in a diverse polycultural garden that adds so much beauty too. Rust was more of a problem with old varieties of hollyhock. I am going to give this a try. It seems to us that the closer they are to the native wildflower the more freely they self seed. Glad you stopped by. Unfortunately in India we do not have big garden spaces outside our homes. I want to plant seed along a wall, they get sun the first half of the day then shade. These new biennial ones are fairly rust resistant. I grew hollyhock from seed last year. They will survive winter just fine and will produce a tall stalk covered with blooms in May. This fully double mix will bloom year after year. I used to think they were biannual ( i.e. We are in Phoenix, and when I had my first house in 1991, I planted a large flower garden (40+ rose bushes!). One to two weeks before the last frost date, scatter seeds where you want the hollyhocks to grow, preferably by a doorway, along a fence, or at the back of a flowerbed. Malva plants (Malva spp.) Unlike perennial hollyhocks (Alcea pallida and A. rugosa), biennial hollyhocks A. ficifolia and A. rosea require two periods of cold weather before they will flower. Always good to hear from you. We collect the hollyhock seeds in September , October and November as that is when they set seed. Best, Jill. How do you prevent the holly hock stems and leaves to stay healthy and green? Some hollyhock seeds seem to resist fungi infections better than others so these are a good start. (Wish me luck!) Up all the way and shared. If you sow them by breaking and scattering dried seed pods outdoors at the end of the growing season, there's no need to soak the seed beforehand. Not a big deal really, I guess, so long as the plants are healthy! Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on September 18, 2017: Hollyhocks are lovely tall flowering plants. However, I personally didn't enjoy the look of the plant very much especially the leaves (although the flowers were stunning!). After a few days, remove the hollyhock pods, breaking them open onto sheets of paper towels. It's so great to see hollyhocks in gardens. We usually don't have a hard freeze after middle of February. In early summer, the flowers completely cover the plant! Wonderfully put together hub. The bees and other creatures just love them! At the annual MD Master Gardener Training Day at UMD, the guest speaker spoke for a bit about his experience with just what you're talking about. Hi landocheese--Now with so many people using landscaping fabric and other barriers, self-seeders can have a tough time! The first year, biennial hollyhocks grow vegetatively; that is, they produce only stalks, stems, and leaves—no flowers. While in the sack, they'll dry out further. Have a good one! t I had no idea what I had. Not only does chaff retain moisture, which could cause seed to rot, but it may also harbor fungal spores and viruses. Conversely, older seeds are less likely to contain living embryos and are therefore less likely to sprout. Hollyhocks really aren't that much effort if you start them outdoors. Kind regards. Hollyhocks come in a wide variety of colors: blue, pink, purple, red, white, yellow and even black. You even see them growing out of the top of flint walls in Blakeney sometimes. When this happens remove the dead plant and either compost or burn it. Jill Spencer (author) from United States on August 12, 2020: I'm sure you can do it, MizBejabbers! Try a hot water treatment. Sow the seed in seed-starting mix with a little sand mixed in. Jill Spencer (author) from United States on March 20, 2019: Hi Renee! Thank you for this very useful article! Adding a packet of silica gel to the container—like the desiccating packets found in new leather shoes and purses—will absorb any residual dampness in the seed and prevent it from molding. Collecting and saving hollyhock flower seeds is a simple process. Seeds contain plant embryos that must be kept alive in order for them to germinate. How do you plant hollyhocks just from seeds, My husband is trying to grow them but they look so spindly any suggestions? Gathering their seeds is a very smart idea, and nature's way of reproducing. You're going to have to bum some hollyhock seeds from all those folks you gave them to! The leaves are coming in one by one. Place the pots on a sunny windowsill—under grow lights or in a cold frame—and keep the soil slightly moist throughout the germination process. They really are magnificent and will keep popping up new flowers right until the first frosts. I should really dedicated it you! Dividing is definitely the easiest--or should I say it provides the quickest, most visible results. Athlyn Green from West Kootenays on April 19, 2017: I love Hollyhock. To start hollyhock seed indoors in the spring, begin in late winter, about nine weeks before the last predicted spring frost in your area. A volunteer hollyhock grew in my garden. Question: I haven't had luck starting hollyhock from seeds, can I start hollyhock seeds inside hydroponically? In all probability, your plant will not produce flowers the first year if it's planted in spring. If the pods are mature, yes, you can salvage the seeds. However, your plant will not be as large as it would be if you planted it in the ground. If you have any tips of your own please leave them in comments. We also remove the large leaves around the base and the dead leaves that have dropped to the ground as this allows better air circulation which also helps to reduce the rust. Congratulations on your well-deserved Hub of the Day award and beaucoup thanks! How to grow hollyhocks – hollyhocks growing at the back of a border . Hollyhocks are well loved for their tall spires of multiple flowers. Make sure to choose a sunny position where the ground is clear. Good upright form with black flowers on stems up to 5' One of our favourites. The tall spikes are covered with blooms from top to bottom. We have friends who make hollyhock dolls for my kids each year :) Maybe I could grow them and make the cute little dolls for others... Subhas from New Delhi, India on April 09, 2013: Your hub has tempted me to grow one. Once the plant has become established it is very difficult to transplant them without killing them in our experience. Remove any wilted leaves to prevent the rust from spreading to other hollyhocks. Best, Jill. Thank you so much for sharing your great story. Hollyhock leaves are … You just have to water them well until established and accept you may lose a few. This is a thorough, useful and very informative hub. ExpectGreatThings from Illinois on April 10, 2013: I just checked and there are tons of photos on Google images of hollyhock dolls. It’s a valuable medicinal plant too and can be use in natural homemade skin care. Is this added when initially planting? Wish you'd write an article about it and post your pictures here on HubPages. Comfort Babatola from Bonaire, GA, USA on April 09, 2013: Beautiful, and very well detailed! I j joined your rank of fans . You may be able to gently dig up the spare ones, and either move them elsewhere or pot them up into pots and grow them on a bit. --Jill, Hi Roberta. Hollyhocks are susceptible to rust. Answer: Hollyhock does cross-pollinate. This may all sound like quite a lot of work, but you will be rewarded by the most glorious sight every summer once they start to flower. Jill Spencer (author) from United States on February 04, 2018: Yay! This really has be itching to get ready for spring gardening. Hollyhock is fun and easy to grow for a brilliant summer show. Biennial hollyhock planted in spring is unlikely to bloom the first year. Also, you'll have to water it more. Jill Spencer (author) from United States on August 10, 2018: You're welcome, Sianni! Add to basket. Supposedly plants from hollyhock seeds are true to color and type, although growing hollyhocks the way I do… letting them reseed themselves and saving and planting seed… has resulted in a continually changing array of flower colors. They are really cute! And yet the most natural thing in the world. In my experience pot grown hollyhocks do not establish as quickly as when they are seeded in the flowering position. I have now been growing them for over 14 years, and I collect seed every year to sow and give away. Have you noticed how much insects love to munch on them? I would especially like some with double blooms. Start them inside about mid-March. I really did snag lots of pink hollyhock seed last fall--more than enough to share! Leave any new flower spikes to come on as they will keep producing new flowers for at least another month. I love Hollyhocks and wish I had room for more, but must keep it to a small areas. My hollyhock story, summer 2017. I have grown hollyhocks from seed, but mostly I've let them sow themselves, though you do lose control of what might come up next year. Thanks for sharing..I always love stopping by as I know you have great ideas and helpful hints for me to know. Both plants need tinkering to be at their best. Hi Stephanie! Will sure be happy this time next year. Plant them at the back of a border as they can reach heights of 2m or more. Can't get them to germinate but still try every year. It's not growing as long as it seems to be in photos. Hollyhocks are considered a biennial, producing clumps of leaves the first year and then tall flower stalks the next year. When we lived out in Alberta, they used to self-seed and would pop up all over the yard and were truly beautiful. Easy walk to pub, restaurants and shops. Although some gardeners recommend biodegradable egg cartons or even eggshell halves, they probably aren't deep enough to give hollyhock seedlings a good start. Hollyhocks will bloom all summer long , well into autumn and in a mild winter we have even still had a couple of flowers at Christmas. I love this hub and it's perfect timing with everything warming up. Take care, Jill, Hi SavingKathy! Once you've collected all of the rooty stalks you intend to collect, immediately transplant them into your garden. If blooms develop the first growing season, the stalks may need to be staked to prevent them from falling over under the weight of the plant's full, heavy flowers. Thanks for this article which will help me keep it coming back! Make sure the seeds are completely dry before storing them, as they have a tendency to mildew. I'm sure your hollyhocks will do well. Up, Useful, and following this hub! The flowers I saw were in many different colors, like pink, magenta, white, red. We only sell Non-GMO seed since 1896. retail stores help line: 1-800-665-6340. web orders and/or gardening help line: 1-855-625-4769; firstname.lastname@example.org; My Account. Be sure to transplant hollyhock plants into fertile, well-composted soil in a sunny location. All the best! A lovely row of fuzzy teddybear sunflowers. I like gardening, but don't have the time or ambition to do something like this right now. Sorry to hear about your cat. I'm wondering if it can still survive from the stalk that's left in the ground. Hollyhock seeds sown in the fall will produce flowers the following summer, while hollyhock seeds sown in the spring will produce flowers the following year during the summer. When they are young seedlings they will need a good watering about once a week, if there are not getting any rain. They are also traditionally grown along fences, by gates, and next to doorways. Such beautiful photos Jill. Learned a lot here, but am especially glad to learn about dividing hollyhocks. I'm intrigued! The ones you planted previously may come up later, too. Some years the colors will be more vibrant or more subdued, and individual flowers will have different color combinations than previous years. I remember my mother telling me that people with outhouses used to often use them to decorate the outsides of those buildings. Alternatively just spread the loose seed where you want it to germinate. I have to admit that after that i gave up , and decided hollyhocks would just not grow in Nottinghamshire and that they were obviously a Norfolk plant. Thus, consider your color preferences as well as your space and height needs before opting for seeds. Water the seeds using a fine hose spray attachment on a watering can or garden hose, until the ground is moist to a depth of 2 inches. Are you sure it's a hollyhock? Jill Spencer (author) from United States on September 18, 2017: Thanks for stopping by, Peggy. Again, thanks so much for sharing the wonderful story. Jill likes cooking, writing, painting, & stewardship, and studies gardening through MD Master Gardener & Master Naturalist programs. I had a home 10 years ago and it had a hollyhock that grew at least 6 fee. So you'll have little trouble differentiating bits of stem, pod, and other chaff from them. This can look somewhat messy but I have found this gives the best germination rate. Thanks so much! About 10 months later when i had nearly given up hope of anything germinating my first tiny hollyhock plants began to appear. Nice to hear from you, Jill, Hi pinto2011--Awesome! Suzanne Ridgeway from Dublin, Ireland on April 09, 2013: Well deserved HOTD! I am not to the stage of growing much from seed, but hopefully that will change. But it is a gravel channel - will they grow in a mix of gravel and soil? I love the pictures, your plant looks beautiful. Great hub. Hope you find some pretty ones to plant. At this point, they are ready to harvest. If you're planting now, in the fall, without saving/refrigerating your seeds, you shouldn't have to dry the matured seeds more. So probably gonna do half now and half in the spring. Right in the middle of a path! So often people confuse biennials and annuals w/herbaceous perennials, not realizing that the plants are re-seeding themselves. Great hub! Go to my profile page, click "Fan Mail" and then, instead of sending fan mail, click "Send The Dirt Farmer a Message." Rust is often worse if you have a wet summer. Short breaks available, Gardeners Cottage, Blakeney, North Norfolk Copyright 2013-2020, Blakeney Cottage website last updated 16/12/20. How can i get them to you? Best, Jill. Good luck to you. (Remember, hollyhocks are tall! I have two 12-foot specimens that grew from seeds a friend sent me, and I want to share them with my friends. They are still growing I think they're about 4 years old. I think that's how you get to it. Rebecca, now's the time to plant 'em! Hollyhocks are a great cut flower and they will sure bring in the hummingbirds and butterflies. Jill Spencer (author) from United States on June 22, 2019: Oh no! it will depend on the weather and the bees if they set seed successfully, Gardeners Cottage is a large luxury 5 bedroom 4 bathroom holiday cottage to rent in Blakeney on North Norfolk coast. Kathy Sima from Ontario, Canada on February 22, 2013: Thanks for that info, Jill. The hollyhock seed should not be planted deeply. And they don't transplant well, so be sure to sow them where you want them to grow.). This will stimulate the hollyhock plant to produce more flower spikes. Cover it lightly with soil, as the seed needs light in order to germinate. The mistake many novice hollyhock growers make … Great hub! That means they need a short season of growth, then cold weather, then warm weather, in order to bloom. Jill Spencer (author) from United States on September 22, 2014: Hey, Sierra! And don’t worry about the cold. Sierra Woods from Albuquerque, New Mexico on September 21, 2014: I have a gorgeous volunteer Hollyhock that is a stunning dark burgundy. Mary from Cronulla NSW on August 22, 2013: It's no wonder this stella hub won HOTD! As a general rule, fresher seed is more likely to germinate than older seed, because the embryos in them are more likely to be alive. Appreciate the positive feedback--in fact, I can't stop smiling. Can someone tell me where to find gibberillic acid? --Jill. However, zones that have hard freezes will either need to treat the plants as annuals or provide protection for hollyhock in winter. resemble miniature hollyhocks with similarly shaped flowers and foliage that look like small hollyhock leaves. Thanks so much for sharing this information. I did have success from plants transplanted from my aunt’s farm, and they reseeded themselves for several years. Stephanie Henkel from USA on April 09, 2013: Congratulations on your Hub of the Day! After reviewing this article, I may try again. I did my research and found that hollyhocks like tough conditions , and lots of sun and ideally like to be against a sunny warm wall as they are tall and this affords them shelter. They are very reliable flowerers. Shared. Prior to sowing, give hollyhock seeds a warm water treatment by soaking them in water that is approximately 113°F (45°C) for roughly 12 hours. Having lived here over a decade and having no hollyhocks, I assumed a bird had deposited a seed. I have a vegetable garden in my yard, on the other side of the house, and I grew pumpkin last year, so, when it appeared out of nowhere, my husband asked if I had dropped any pumpkin seeds (as the young hollyhock leaves closely resemble the leaves on the pumpkin plants). He feels terrible. My grrrr husband decided that mine were taking over the back yard, so he eliminated them all. I just put them out. Thanks for the kind words. The rains, snows, frosts, and thaws of autumn, winter, and spring are all the water treatment the seed needs to prep it for germination. These are such gorgeous plants ---I am in town today so will look for some seeds. Thank you. Thanks for sharing this information. In the late 1960s, botanists at the National Botanic Gardens in Lucknow, India found that soaking hollyhock seeds in hot water anywhere from 60–70°C for 30 minutes greatly improved their germination rate. sleeps up to 14. (See directions for harvesting and saving hollyhock seed below.). They do love to self seed, but you have done a very nice job of showing people how to save Hollyhock seeds for transplanting next year, which will offer more control of where they end up. We have found that the singles seed much better than the doubles. Your article is very informative, thank you. Seedlings usually appear in 10 to 14 days. Almost every year, I pick the most mature green seed pods and bring them inside to dry. If possible, sow hollyhock seed in biodegradable containers, such as peat pots, newsprint pots, or paper towel and toilet tissue rolls (cut into 3-inch lengths). Thanks for mentioning this, ExpectGreatThings! A lovely, white with cream center 12 1/2 feet tall! Where we used to live in Alberta, they would self-seed so each year, we were treated to a display in our back yard. To force biennial hollyhocks to flower the first year, treat them with gibberellic acid, a flower inducer that takes the place of a cold period. A hard rain hit, washing out that area a bit, and the seeds germinated after all. The first time I paid attention to the seed pod I thought it resembled an old coin purse with the string at the top to draw it closed. Rust is a red coloured mold that grows on hollyhock leaves in the summer months and can be quite unsightly and if left completely unchecked may weaken the plant. Every week I go around the hollyhocks and remove the worst affected leaves. Doris James MizBejabbers from Beautiful South on August 12, 2020: I had to come back and reread your great article so I could restart some hollyhocks. Most hollyhocks are biennials, so the plants only last two seasons and then don't come back. It's always a good idea to hold a few seeds back and help nature along. It took me a year to write this hub after you mentioned in an email that I should do it. Hollyhocks are so lovely, but it is one plant I have never tried growing. Who would have thought? Read our blog to find out more about the cottage and Blakeney. And because it will have experienced bouts of winter cold—unlike spring-sown hollyhock—the plants will likely produce flowers in the first growing season. The water treatment is a great idea I will try this year. Thanks for your kind words! Hope you do enjoy growing hollyhocks. Jill Spencer (author) from United States on August 22, 2013: carter06, thanks so much! Thelma Alberts from Germany and Philippines on April 09, 2013: Beautiful Flowers! Congratulations on HOTD; you totally deserve it. i find they germinate best on gravel aganist a sunny wall. Question: I’ve already mulched my flower bed and just remembered I have hollyhock seeds I saved. How to Plant Hollyhocks. Good luck to you! Thank you. This year I thought nature wouldn't mind if I took a couple of seed pods - I shall be planting immediately (18 Sept 2017). Cottage gardens stalwarts of cottage gardens some years the colors will be more vibrant or subdued... For one to start followed by 164 people on Pinterest well drained soil congratulation! 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