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Looking like a miniature hollyhock, malva produces pretty flower spikes in blue, pink, purple, or white. It also has attractive heart-shape foliage and is useful among shrubs, in wild gardens, and in mixed borders.
These short-lived plants self-seed but generally do not become invasive. Staking may be required in windy places. Mallows are not fussy about soil, but they do need full sun to do well.
garden plans for Mallow
more varieties for Mallow
'Zebrina' tree mallow
Malva sylvestris 'Zebrina' has 2-inch pinkish flowers brilliantly centered and veined with strong purple. These cluster in the axils of dark green, lobed leaves on shrubby 3-foot stems. Zones 4-8
plant Mallow with
Obedient plant is named for the way flowers that are moved to a new position on the stem stay in place, much to the delight of children.It produces showy, unusual flower spikes with little tubular flowers in white, pink, or purple. They're excellent as cut flowers. Square stems carry pairs of mid-green (sometimes variegated), lance-shaped foliage, toothed along the edges. Obedient plant tolerates most soils, but tends to become aggressive when given ample water and full sun. It tolerates most soils.
The inflated buds of balloon flowers are fun to pop. And they make great cut flowers. Cut them in the bud stage, and sear the base of the stems to prevent the milky sap from seeping out and fouling the water.Most commonly available in blue-violet, balloon flowers also come in pink and white, as well as shorter forms that are better suited for rock gardens and containers. In fall, the foliage of balloon flower turns clear gold, so don't cut the plant down too early -- enjoy the show! They tolerate light shade, but not wet feet or drought.
Globe thistle is one of the most elegantly colored plants around. It has fantastical large blue balls of steel blue flowers in midsummer, which would be enough. But making it even more lovely are its large coarse, grayish-green leaves, which set off the flower beautifully.If you can bear to separate them from the foliage, globe thistle makes a great cut flower, lasting for weeks in the vase. It also dries well. It's bothered by few pests or diseases. If it likes its conditions, it will reseed fairly readily. If you want to prevent this, deadhead flowers shortly after they fade.