The official blog of Bobbi Dawn Rightmyer, Kentucky author, poet, writer and storyteller
Tuesday, March 1, 2016
Mrs. Greenhands - Hollyhocks
Hollyhocks are wonderful editions to the Bluegrass garden and now is the time to start planting seeds. Remember, hollyhocks are biennials, so they will not bloom in their first year. Here are the steps for planting hollyhock seeds:
Collect hollyhock seeds from a friendly neighbor or buy them from a seed catalog. Hollyhocks grow best in Zones 3 through 9. These flowers are considered biennials, but can be perennials if the flowers are dead headed at the end of their growing season.
Start growing the hollyhock seeds indoors to get a jump on the growing season. These flowers typically have a blooming season from July to September in most parts of the country. Plant the seeds about 6 to 8 weeks before the last frost. By starting them early they may bloom the first year.
Use good soil with lots of compost to help the seeds grow. Be sure to use pots with some depth or use peat pots as hollyhocks do tap roots. They don't need to be planted too deeply, just ¼ inch or so in depth. If deciding to sow the seeds directly into the garden, sprinkle the seeds on top of tilled soil and sprinkle more soil to cover the seeds ¼ inch.
Transplant seedlings into the garden when all danger of frost has passed. Be sure the roots are covered with soil and that the flowers are 1 ½ to 2 feet apart. They grow well in full sun to partial shade and need to be watered regularly.
Hollyhocks will continue to self-propagate, spreading themselves around the garden.