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is this a Hollyhock or a weed?

  • is this a Hollyhock or a weed?

A few of these have appeared in my garden. i did scatter some hollyhock seeds in the spring... but its a new garden, so might be an imported weed (coltsfoot?)... any ideas? about the size of a hand.

Comments (9)

  1. Grower

    Susie Edwards

    Looks about right to be a hollyhock!

  2. Grower

    Rachel the Gardener

    Hi Ruth,

    Well, the good news is that it's not Mallow, as that has a sharply angled sinus (the shape where the leaf joins the petiole) and this is nicely rounded.

    The less good news is that both hollyhock and Alliaria petiolata (Hedge Mustard, very common weed) both have rounded sinuses (sinii?) so it could be either , but judging by the scale - well done for including a hand for scale! - they are big enough to be hollyhock.

    Coltsfoot leaves, although they also have a rounded sinus, don't overlap themselves at the petiole end, and even at an early stage, they show that distinctive "angled" outline, so I don't think these are coltsfoot.

    It's always exciting, throwing down seed in the garden, isn't it?!

  3. Grower

    Ruth Henrietta

    Thank you so much... If they're hollyhocks, I assume they'll flower next year, not this?

  4. Grower

    Ruth Henrietta

    Hi Rachel, I've been to have another look, and I'm sure it's Alliaria petiolata ... There's a hollyhock seedling next to one, & the leaves are different textures... Former smooth, latter hairy. So thanks for that ID.

  5. Grower

    Rachel the Gardener

    Hi Ruth, happy to help! Yes, Alliaria petiolata leaves are smooth, top and bottom: Alcea (hollyhock) leaves are described as being hairy underneath. I've never actually looked that closely at the leaves on a hollyhock, so that's something for me to check out!

    And to answer the questions, yes, if they were hollyhock seedlings, then they would just make a rosette of leaves this year, and next year they would start throwing up flowering stems. Although they are officially biennial, they often work out to be perennials, getting stouted and woodier as each year passes.

  6. Grower

    Rob Johnson, Green & Furry pet and garden care

    Could be hedge garlic, alliaria petiolata. Not a Garlic, but related to,brassicas, a native wild flower, the whole plant smells strongly of garlic,

  7. Grower

    Ruth Henrietta

    Thanks Rob, I think you're right!

  8. Grower
  9. Grower

    Rachel the Gardener

    Talking of Garlic, if you are interested in it, have you read the GPS info page about it? It mentions Alliaria petiolata there, too...

    What is Garlic?


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