How to Grow Hollyhocks from Seed
Hollyhock are often associated with the traditional English garden and yet there is so much more this handsome hummingbird magnet especially when grown outside of the typical cottage border layout.
Today Hollyhocks are popular all over the World, originating from Europe and Asia they are popular with traditional and modern garden designs where there long-flowering season and selection of vibrant colorful turrets flower for many weeks in Summer.
Propagation: How to Grow Hollyhocks from Seed
On receipt of your seeds it is best to store them in the vegetable drawer of a fridge, until the correct time to sow.
Fall sowing is advised if you want your hollyhock plants to have the chance to flower next year, encouraging seedlings to overwinter will ensure strong root systems and potential for flowering the next season.
Improved seed germination can be encouraged by pre-soaking seeds in tepid water, soak overnight prior to sowing for increased germination, this softens the seeds had shell and speeds up the germination process.
Providing optimum conditions the seeds will germinate quickly and should be potted up to allow the long tap roots to develop.
Plants raised from seeds sown in fall may require some winter protection to prevent roots from freezing but kept cool to initiate first winter dormancy.
Re-emerging in the spring your hollyhock plants will grow quickly with an established root system and may require a little spring protection from hard frost and pests.
Plants that are provided optimum growing conditions are likely to flower during the first Summer.
Keep the area clean beneath your hollyhocks to prevent damping off or rust. I like to mound up around the plants base with washed, fine hort sand to improve drainage and keep pests at bay.
Remove any leaves with leaf spots as soon as they appear, young plants can be sprayed with a rust preventing fungicide, I prefer to use good housekeeping and limit the use of chemicals.
Plants may require staking as they grow taller alternative grow through plants and twigs that provide additional support.
Enjoy your hollyhock seeds
Cottage Garden Hollyhock Seeds Single Colors Hummingbird Pollinator Alcea rosea Designer
Sow Hollyhocks for an abundance of malva spires early Summer.
Hollyhocks often considered bi annual since they take a second growing season to send up a flower stem, can be tricked into flowering ahead of schedule by sowing in early Summer.
Growing on plants through fall to winter and then dormancy signals the hollyhock to flower next year.
I find growing plants from seed incredibly rewarding, even the smallest of outdoor garden areas can be a productive workout for all the family. Try thinking of your garden as a living kitchen and grow to love fresh flowers, organic fruit and vegetables straight from your own backyard oasis.Stephen Pryce-Lea