Growing Tips for Hollyhocks
We've tried to start hollyhocks around our house, but haven't had any luck. Can you share some sure-fire growing tips?
—Andy and Karen Irish, Alburg, Vermont
Melinda: Most commonly grown hollyhocks are biennial, which means they grow some foliage in the first year and taller flowering stems during the second. To start hollyhocks from seed, plant them in midsummer in soil you've improved with organic matter and then water as needed. You also can ask a friend or neighbor for a few young seedlings that have two to three true leaves. Plant these in your garden in early fall. Once your first plant blooms, you'll have more hollyhocks than you have space to grow. They freely reseed.