Malvas plants are a genus of flowering plants in the family Malvaceae, which includes hibiscus and cotton. These plants are native to India, Africa, and the Mediterranean region, and they’re prized for their bright, showy flowers. If you’re looking to add some color to your garden or home, these plants are an ideal choice. However, they do require specific care in order to thrive. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about Malvas plant care.
Best Fertilizer for Malvas Plants
Malvas plants prefer a balanced fertilizer with an N-P-K ratio of 8-8-8. Apply fertilizer once every two weeks during the growing season and discontinue use in the winter. Additionally, be sure to water your plants before applying fertilizer to avoid burning their roots.
Best Soil for Malvas Plants
Malvas plants prefer soil that is light and well-draining. You can create your own mix using one part potting soil with one part perlite or sand. Additionally, adding some compost or manure will help provide essential nutrients and help retain moisture in the soil.
Different Types of Malvas Plants
There are several different species of Malvas plants available, including Malva sylvestris (common mallow), Malva alcea (high mallow) and Malva moschata (musk mallow). Each species has its own unique characteristics, including flower color, size, and growth habit.
What are Some Other Names Malvas Plants?
Malvas plants are also known as mallow, cheeses, or high mallow.
Growth Rate of Malvas Plants
Malvas plants are fast-growing and can reach heights of up to six feet in ideal conditions.
How Much Light Do Malvas Plants Need?
Malvas plants prefer full sun but will tolerate partial shade. In areas with hot summers, providing some shade during the hottest part of the day is beneficial.
How Often to Water Malvas Plants
Malvas plants should be watered deeply once a week during the growing season and allowed to dry out slightly between waterings. In the winter months, reduce watering to once every two weeks or when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch.
How to Propagate Malvas Plants
Malvas plants can be propagated by seed or stem cuttings. To propagate by seed, sow them directly into the soil in spring or early summer when temperatures are consistently above 60°F (15°C). Stem cuttings can be taken in late summer or early fall and rooted in moist potting soil.
How to Prune Malvas Plants
Malvas plants should be pruned in late winter or early spring before new growth begins. Remove dead or damaged stems first, then cut back remaining stems by half their length to promote bushier growth and encourage more flowers. Be sure to sanitize your pruning tools before use to prevent disease and pest infestation.
Humidity Conditions for Malvas Plants
Malvas plants prefer moderately humid conditions between 40% and 50%. If your home is too dry, consider investing in a humidifier or placing a bowl of pebbles filled with water near your plant to increase humidity levels around it.
Ideal Pot Size for Malvas Plants
When potting your Malvas plant, select a pot that is slightly larger than the root ball. A clay pot will help regulate moisture better than plastic pots and will also allow excess water to evaporate more quickly.
Ideal Temperature Conditions for Malvas Plants
Malvas plants prefer temperatures between 60°F (15°C) and 75°F (24°C). They can tolerate temperatures as low as 50°F (10°C) but should be protected from freezing temperatures.
Main Uses of Malvas Plants
In addition to being ornamental plants, Malvas have several uses both medicinally and culinarily. The leaves can be eaten raw or cooked like spinach and have a mild peppery flavor. They’re also used medicinally as a diuretic, laxative, and emollient.
Repotting Tips for Malvas Plants
If your Malva has outgrown its current pot or if you’re noticing signs of root rot (such as yellowing leaves), it’s time to repot it into a larger container with fresh soil mix. Be sure to water your plant thoroughly after repotting and keep it out of direct sunlight for several days until it has adjusted to its new home.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Malvas Plants Edible?
Yes, malva leaves are edible when cooked and have a mild peppery flavor similar to spinach.
Are Malvas Plants Toxic to Cats and Dogs?
No, malva plants are not toxic to cats or dogs if ingested in small amounts. However, they can cause an upset stomach so it’s best not to let them nibble on your houseplants.
Do Malvas Plants Prefer To Grow Indoors Or Outside?
While malva plants can grow both indoors and outdoors, they tend to do best when grown outdoors in full sun or partial shade with plenty of airflow around them.
Are Malvas Plants Poisonous?
No, malva plants are not poisonous if ingested in small amounts but they may cause an upset stomach so it’s best not to let them eat them.