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Tree Mallow
Lavatera arborea

Family: Malvaceae (mal-VAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Lavatera (lav-uh-TEER-uh) (Info)
Species: arborea (ar-BOR-ee-uh) (Info)
View this plant in a garden

Category:

Perennials

Height:

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

Spacing:

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

Hardiness:

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Danger:

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Rose/Mauve

Magenta (Pink-Purple)

Fuchsia (Red-Purple)

Purple

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Foliage:

Evergreen

Blue-Green

Velvet/Fuzzy-Textured

Other details:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Provides winter interest

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Non-patented

Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Regional

This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Porthleven,

Baywood-los Osos, California

San Dimas, California

Lake Charles, Louisiana

Gardeners' Notes:

2
positives
0
neutrals
0
negatives
RatingContent
Positive

On Jun 9, 2013, stephenp from Wirral, UK, Zone 9a
United Kingdom (Zone 9a) wrote:

Lovely addition to the native coastal flora here, blooms profusely in mid summer, bringing a touch of the Mediterranean to the beach. Supposedly quite tender for a British native?

I have uploaded a photo on here, but one of the specimens on our towns beach has a candelabra habit, resembling plants more likely found on the Canary Islands - very attractive.

Positive

On Nov 4, 2010, peejay12 from Porthleven, Helston, Cornwall
United Kingdom (Zone 9b) wrote:

I have to say my experience with this plant is very 'positive'.

Most people have probably only seen this plant growing wild on the milder coasts of Britain and Europe - battered and torn by the winds and covered in aphids and capsid bugs.
And yet, with a little care and attention this cinderella of the lavateras can become a princess -- well, almost!

I grew the plants from wild-collected seed, overwintered the young plants and planted them out in Spring. Like Hollyhocks, these plants flower in their second year, but may behave like biennials or short-lived perennials.
In the sheltered conditions of the garden they grew much wider and luxuriant than by the sea - 7 feet high and 4 feet across, and produced a much better flower display. The flowers... read more