Family: Malvaceae

Scientific Name: Alcea rosea Nigra

Common Name: Nigra Hollyhock

DescriptionA classic Hollyhock with dark maroon almost black single flowers.
Plant TypeBiennials
Hardiness Zone4-9
Moistureaverage, avoid water on the leaves
Soil & Siteaverage
Temperaturesomewhat frost tolerant
FlowersThe single dark maroon flowers occur in terminal racemes
LeavesLeaves are lobed and rough textured. The nemesis of this plant is Hollyhock rust, a leaf disfiguring fungus. Newer varieties are reported to be more resistant.
Dimensions5-8 feet tall
MaintenanceIn the fall remove all dead plant parts and discard. These will carry over the rust spores. The rust is caused by Puccinia malvacearum, a fungus attacking the Malvaceae family. Staking maybe needed
PropagationThey are easily grown from seed but will take two years to flower. First year the plant will grow vegetatively and the next year flower, than die. Many times succeeding generations will come from the seeds that fall too the ground.
Native SiteChina
Cultivar OriginSpecies native to China and has been grown there for perhaps 2 thousand years. Introduced into England in the 1600's.
Author's NotesHollyhock is a good indicator plant for "days gone by". It is a given if Hollyhock and or Lilac are growing in an old field there was once a house near by.
Notes & Reference#28-Cottage Garden Annuals(Clive Lane), #51-Armitage's Manual of Annuals, Biennials, and Half-Hardy Perennials (Alan Arimitage), #109-Annuals and Tender Perennials for North American Gardens (Wayne Winterrowd)
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