It is still a dream of mine to create a vast blaze of colour. I want a whole flower bed bursting with bright red, dainty pink, creamy yellow and exquisite burgundy hollyhock blossoms, standing tall in the sunlight. (deep long sigh)
I tried last year; really tried. https://westlakemusings.com/2012/10/27/hollyhock-obsession-making-it-so/ I cleared the land, turned the sod and trucked in nutritious, compost rich soil. Through repeated clandestine missions (mostly executed in the dark) and plotted like a diamond heist, I gathered seeds from all of my neighbours plants. After a month 30 little sprouts had germinated. These I planted last October. For added assurance I also sprinkled hundreds and hundreds of hollyhock seeds on top of the soil.
The end results: ……three lousy plants. (I think). Hollyhocks are bi-annual flowers so I can only assume these three plants are indeed hollyhocks. It is possible that they are just massive weeds that I have been watering all summer.
To say that I was disappointed is a huge understatement. BUT….I won’t give up.
I repeated the seed snatch again this summer. Three weeks ago I planted those seeds and I am now waiting for their second set of leaves before I transplant them into the garden.
This morning one of my favourite blogs “Leaf and Twig” posted a beautiful reminder of why I do all this. Hollyhocks are my dream and its reward will be stunning. …….
……………………………………………….. Just you wait.
Today I am reblogging one of my favourite sites. “Leaf and Twig” arrives daily. This morning’s message felt personal. I have reposted it below in appreciation. It is called Hollyhock’s Gifts. http://leafandtwig.wordpress.com/2013/08/25/hollyhocks-gifts/
packaged for next season
a small green purse
contains new beginnings
Good for you for your persistence. I never realized hollyhocks were so difficult to grow. They grew wild in the field behind my parents’ house, so I just assumed they were low maintenance. I too share your dream of a blaze of hollyhocks. Perhaps I will be able to learn from your experience. Keep going and good luck!
Hollyhocks are one of my favourite flowers since childhood when they grew in our backyard. I remember being fascinated by the many colours and how the flowers grew up the stem. I look forward to seeing the profusion of colour that will come from your efforts.
Your plants are definitely hollyhocks. They should produce gorgeous blooms next year. Plant seeds next year too so you will have plants in both stages.
I’m disappointed I didn’t get any photos of hollyhocks n the County this year.