Brilliant hollyhocks are prone to fungus

Garden hollyhock

What it is: An old-fashioned flower best for those who wish to produce a cottage garden. Hollyhocks came from Asia Minor and are one of the earliest plants in growing.

Look: Frilly bell-shaped flowers 3 1/2 inches large (in some cases more) bloom on high spires 5 to 8 feet high. Flowers can be single or double-ruffled.

Colors are vibrant deepest maroon through rose, pink and white. Leaves are large and rough. It shows best as a background plant along a fence or wall.

Growing: Hardy in Zones 2 to 8. It can be grown as an herbaceous seasonal, biennial or annual, and its finest grown from seed sown straight into the garden early to mid-May.

Hollyhocks prosper in abundant soils and bright places. Flower time is between mid-June and August.

Hollyhocks are vulnerable to rust, a fungal disease that shows as yellow or orange areas on the upper leaf surface area. WGGC Water at the base of the plant and keep flowers and foliage as dry as possible. If rust takes place, remove and deal with contaminated leaves and stems. Composting is not recommended.

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