Hollyhock As Tall As a Tree

A hollyhock in my side yard loves the environment. It receives just the right amount of shade and sun to thrive. This year, it has grown almost as tall as a tree. It stands two feet taller than the six-and-a-half foot cement wall between my yard and the rest of the neighborhood. It has a good view of everything happening on the other side of that wall.

Its pink flowers are beautiful. My mom told me that when she was a girl she loved to play with hollyhock blossoms. She would take two blossoms and put them together, back to back, to make a hollyhock doll.

I have hollyhocks in my front yard as well. The ones that get both shade and sun do better than the ones that are in full sun. One of them in my front yard, partly shaded by a tall juniper tree, is so tall that it gains support from some pretty tall juniper branches. This helps it a lot, especially when it’s windy.

Hollyhocks have a way of spreading. I sometimes find tiny new plants quite a distance from the main plant. I dug up one of those new plants in the front yard and planted it in the side yard next to my very tall hollyhock that peers over the cement wall. It is thriving, and some day it might be tall enough to peer over the wall as well.

If you would like to plant a hollyhock in your yard, a good way would be to go to a plant nursery and buy a baby hollyhock that has already started growing in a little temporary pot. Take it home. Dig a hole a little taller than the pot the hollyhock plant came in. Line the bottom of the hole with some potting mix. Pour some water into the hole just enough to cover the potting mix. Then gently remove the hollyhock with its soil from the pot it came in. Place it into the hole you prepared. Fill the hole with surrounding dirt and enough potting mix to make a little hill around the baby plant. Give it some more water. Every day add a little water so it has plenty of moisture to help it grow.

It will take two or three weeks for the baby plant to get used to its new home. When it adjusts, it will start to grow. It might grow enough to have flowers the first season you plant it. If not, don’t give up. It will very likely blossom next year. When it has plenty of blossoms, see if you can put two blossoms back to back and make a hollyhock doll like my mom used to make.

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