Excellent background shrub for beds of annuals and perennials. Numerous showy pale lavender with purple throat flowers against maple-like gray-green leaves. Prune occasionally to keep foliage dense. Evergreen.
- DetailBotanical Pronunciation:lav-a-TEE-ra ma-RIT-i-maPlant type:ShrubDeciduous/evergreen:DeciduousGrowth rate:FastAverage landscape size:Stout shrub to 4 to 6 ft. tall and wide.Special features:Attracts Birds, Attracts Butterflies, Attracts Hummingbirds, Easy Care, Fast Growing, Waterwise, Year-round InterestFoliage color:Gray-greenBlooms:Summer to fallFlower color:PurpleDesign IdeasBush Mallow is a Mediterranean shrub that is most at home in drier Western landscapes. Rangy and irregular, it's best as a background shrub for more compact dryland or native flowering perennials. It can be clipped or sheared for a more formal character as a hedge or medium-height screen. Perfect on banks and slopes, among landscape boulders and in wild landscapes. Its greatest value is as a source of color in drought-resistant gardens, where its uniquely textured foliage makes a lush back-of-the-border filler.Companion PlantsThe natural companion for other large rangy shrubs such as Sweet Broom (Cytisus x spachianus), Turner's Shari-D Oleander (Nerium oleander Turner's Shari-DTM) and Royal Red Butterfly Bush (Buddleia davidii 'Royal Red'). Also just as at home with Peppermint Lace Crape Myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica 'Peppermint Lace') and the rugged Therese Bugnet Japanese Rose (Rosa x 'Therese Bugnet').
- CareCare InformationFollow a regular watering schedule during the first growing season to establish a deep, extensive root system. Feed with a general purpose fertilizer before new growth begins in spring. For a formal appearance, shear annually after flowering.Pruning time: spring.Light Needs:Full sunWatering Needs:Once established, needs only occasional watering.
- History & LoreHistory:This genus belongs to the mallow family which also contains hollyhocks and hibiscus. The 25 species of Lavatera are mostly native to the Mediterranean. The species name, maritima suggests its origins in the coastal or maritime regions of North Africa.Lore:Mallows are closely related to the wetland plant known as "marsh mallow" with roots used to create this popular confection.