Alcea, Common Hollyhock, Garden Hollyhock 'Indian Spring'

Alcea rosea

Family: Malvaceae (mal-VAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Alcea (al-KEE-uh) (Info)
Species: rosea (RO-zee-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Indian Spring
Synonym:Althaea rosea




Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun




Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


9-12 in. (22-30 cm)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

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)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:


Medium Purple

White/Near White

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

Direct sow as soon as the ground can be worked

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

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

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Capistrano Beach, California

Lawndale, California

Rockford, Illinois

Ruthven, Iowa

Brunswick, Maine

Marietta, Mississippi

Blair, Nebraska

Elba, New York

Spencer, Oklahoma

Portland, Oregon

Columbia, South Carolina

Greeneville, Tennessee

Houston, Texas

Tacoma, Washington

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Feb 1, 2018, lathyrusZ4b from Ruthven, IA wrote:

I started both Indian Spring and Nigra hollyhocks under lights in March, put them out in late May. They were eaten to the ground by a woodchuck but came back. No flowers from Nigra this year, but Indian Spring started blooming in July. Colors I got were deep red, magenta pink, soft pink, and white. The red topped out around 5 ft and blooms were a bit smaller, but it flowered a month earlier and was a bloom machine. No rust, no pests -- tho the cool, dry summer (NW Iowa) may have affected that -- and unlike my Creme de Cassis hollyhocks, these never needed staking. They attracted bumblebees and hummingbirds like crazy. Really couldn't ask for more from this one.


On Sep 29, 2017, jonwaugh from Brunswick, ME (Zone 5b) wrote:

I am in Zone 5. Hollyhock, in my experience, is very prone to rust infestations. While I respect organic gardeners, for this disease spraying with a disease preventative has always worked to prevent if sprayed before, and stop/eliminate the disease if sprayed when the rust is noticed. Rust is a nasty/ugly disease, and it attacks Aster plants too. For me, spraying those two plants to prevent/eliminate rust is a worthwhile trade to enjoy the beautiful flowers of Hollyhock and Aster. Using a hose end sprayer, and the upwards angled nozzle, try to spray the underside of the leaves which is where the rust actually is located, although we see it on the topside of the leaf. And spraying the ground around the plant, especially the crown helps too. Rust seems to hold over in the soil, or likely in ... read more


On Aug 30, 2010, sketchkat06 from Lawndale, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

I though the hibiscus looking flowers on this variety were nice. They needed a bit of staking to stay up, they really wanted to flop over. I started mine indoors in December and it was early enough to tricke them into blooming first year.

Warning for southern California: I had serious trouble with scale infesting my hollyhocks and the rubbing alcohol didn't work to get them off. The plants made it to bloom and seed, but the scale seriously uglified the leaves :/


On Jul 2, 2009, lehua_mc from Portland, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

This rating could be positive, since its vigor was a major boon to my garden, but Puccinia malvacearum, the hollyhock rust struck, with the "small light reddish brown pustules" on the underside of a variety of leaves, old, young, healthy.
I sowed these in mid April, and three months later, my robust crop was 4' high and about to flower! They got morning shade and intense afternoon heat. Even with the rust I enjoyed one season of the flowers, into November. Come spring however the rust was total and complete, disfiguring what tried to be perennial and requiring total demolition of the area. I am planting native shrubs in that area now, no more risks.


On Mar 2, 2006, girlndocs from Tacoma, WA wrote:

I love this flower, epecially massed together, but I have given up on it because of the continuous fungal problems and slug problems. It self sowed like mad, and I'd find healthy little seedlings popping up, but before they send up blooming stalks they were usually eaten to lace or crusted with rusty spots. I don't have time or energy for plants that need constant coddling to bloom, and unfortunately it looks like hollyhocks are one of those plants in my garden.

I still have the occasional volunteer, though, and when one of those blooms it's always a pleasant surprise.


On Nov 28, 2003, Fleurs from Columbia, SC wrote:

'Indian Spring' bloomed this summer after being winter sowed. Flowers are large, single blossoms in shades of pale yellow, hot pink, and deep rose; foliage has been remarkably pest-free.