Flowers

7 types of Alcea

The species of the genus Alcea are herbaceous plants that you have probably seen on some occasion in a field or similar. They are very adaptable, in fact they do not need much to grow, and neither to flourish; However, when you want to grow them, they can give the feeling that they are a bit difficult to maintain, especially if they are seedlings.

But once they start to have real leaves and gain height, their maintenance becomes easy. The most interesting thing is that, depending on the variety, its flowers are of one color or another. So you will always have the option of creating a multicolored floral composition, something that will undoubtedly beautify your garden, or the patio if you decide to have them there.

7 types of Alcea

Alcea acaulis

Image – Wikimedia/ Sf2000

The Alcea acaulis is a biennial herbaceous plant native to the Mediterranean region, where it grows in forests, bushes and steppes. Unlike other species, the stem is barely distinguishable (that is why it is called acaulis), since it is very short. It blooms from March to May in the northern hemisphere, producing pink, purple, or white flowers.

Alcea heldreichii

The Alcea heldreichii is a herb native to Europe, about which there is not much information. The only thing we can say is that it is a threatened species, and that its flowers are pale pink.

Alcea pallida

Image – Wikimedia/ Krzysztof Golik

The Alcea pallida is a species native to southwestern Europe. It lives several years, and can reach a height of 180 centimeters. Its leaves have a silver underside, a characteristic that makes it a very beautiful plant. As for its flowers, they are salmon-pink in color, and sprout from May to September in the northern hemisphere.

Alcea rosea

Image – Wikimedia/ Buendia22

The Alcea rosea is one of the best known species, perhaps the most, in Europe. It is native, not only from this continent, but also from America, Asia and Australia. It is a biennial herb (it lives for two years) that reaches a height of 2 meters. Its flowers are up to 10 centimeters in diameter, and are red, purple, white, pink, yellow, or black-purple.

The scientific name Alcea ficifolia is synonymous with A. rosea.

Applications

It has been used medicinally, in particular its flowers, for being emollients, expectorants, and also for being a good remedy for constipation. On the other hand, its petals are dyed especially for wine.

Rough moose

Image – Wikimedia/ Michael Wolf

The Alcea rugosa is a biennial plant native to Europe. It can reach an approximate height of 2 meters, and blooms in summer. Its flowers are yellow, large, with stems covered by “hairs”.

It should be noted that it resists rust, and that it can be planted near and/ or under walnut trees, since it has been shown to tolerate the toxic juglone emitted by its roots.

Alcea setosa

Image – Wikimedia/ אלי זהבי

The Alcea setosa, known as bristly hollyhock, is a biennial herbaceous plant native to Crete, Turkey, Lebanon, Syria and Palestine. It reaches a height of 70-100 centimeters, and its flowers are pink in color. These appear in spring (from April to June), and appear in great numbers.

Alcea striata

Image – Wikimedia/ כ.אלון.

The Alcea striata is a plant native to the eastern Mediterranean to the Arabian Peninsula. It can grow up to 70-80 centimeters in height, and its flowers are white.

Moose care

We have seen the best known species, but now we have to know what care we must give them so that they are well. So let’s get to it:

Location

These plants must be in sunny areas. Don’t be afraid of a direct hit – they need it! In this sense, they are like sunflowers: when they lack light… their stems fall, they stop producing flowers, and they weaken. For this reason, it is not a good idea to keep them indoors either.

Earth

  • Pot: you can put a substrate for plants, the universal one, although we advise mixing it with 30% perlite in case it does not have one. The hollyhocks cannot stand waterlogging.
  • Garden: the earth, as long as the water drains well, will be correct.

Irrigation

During spring and especially in summer you have to go watering from time to time. We have said that waterlogging must be avoided, but it is also important that the land does not remain dry for too long. Therefore, if you have doubts, there is nothing better than checking the humidity with a wooden stick for example.

If you have it in a pot, do not put a plate under it to prevent the water from stagnating.

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In the middle of the growing and flowering season, it is highly advisable to fertilize them with a liquid fertilizer for flowering plants, like this one sold here. Follow the instructions for use to know what dose to take, and how often to apply it.

Multiplication

The Alcea multiply by seeds in spring-summer. These have to be sown preferably in a seedling tray, since having different alveoli you will be able to control much better how many germinate and when.

Fill it with seedbed substrate (you can get it by clicking on this link ), put a maximum of 2 seeds in each alveolus, and cover them with a thin layer of soil. Then, put the seedling in the sun, and keep the substrate moist.

Thus, they will germinate in about ten days. When they do, leave the seedlings in that seedbed until the roots come out of the drainage holes, at which point you can plant them in pots or in the garden.

Pruning

With clean scissors you can remove the dried stems and the flowers that are wilting.

Rusticity

It depends on the species, but in general they resist moderate frosts down to -12ºC.

What do you think of the Alcea?

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