If you want to decorate your garden or house with some unusual and very striking flower, then the malopa is perfect for this purpose. This flower is very rare in middle latitudes at the moment, so it will surely become the main decoration of your plot.
Peculiarities of malopa
The herbaceous plant malopa can be found in nature in the Mediterranean. It is often referred to locally as the hole-in-the-wall plant. It is part of the Malva family.
Today this plant can be found not only in nature, it is also cultivated in the open ground, and in indoor conditions.
Flowering shrubs malopa look the most decorative. During this period they open with large, highly decorative funnel-shaped flowers. The mallow and malopa flowers have a lot in common, but there are differences between them as well. They are more delicate and have a richer color.
In nature as well as in the garden, this plant is an annual. Depending on the variety, the shrubs can be both medium-sized and relatively tall: from 40 to 100 centimeters. The stem of the hole-in-the-head is strongly branched. The leaves have a spectacular heart-shaped shape, with jagged edges. During flowering, the bush is decorated with single flowers.
Their corolla consists of five bright petals. If pollination occurs, about fifty small seeds will form on the place of each flower.
Most often this flower is cultivated in the open ground, decorating a garden plot with it. In the middle latitudes, it grows and develops quite well and blooms spectacularly. However, you will also find it indoors where it can also thrive under certain growing conditions.
What is the difference between malopa and lavatera
Inexperienced gardeners often confuse some varieties of malopa with another garden crop, lavatera. But they are completely different plants that differ greatly.
The most common way to distinguish between these crops is by their size. Lavatera has smaller flowers than malopa. It also has smaller bushes because of the shorter shoots.
These differences are usually enough to determine whether the flower in front of you is a holly or a lavatera.
Putting malopa in the open ground
Growing from seed for seedlings
We already mentioned above that malopa grown in the garden is an annual. That is why you have to grow it from seed every year.
Grow this crop through seedlings, with the time of sowing the seeds depending entirely on the climatic conditions of your region. You can sow seeds of malopa throughout the spring, the main thing to take into account is that when it is time to transplant seedlings into the open ground, the air outside must be already well warmed.
And you should also be aware that flowers can be harmed even by a slight frost. Therefore, it is so important to leave the spring frosts behind.
Before proceeding to the direct sowing of seeds, you need to prepare special seedling boxes. They are filled with loose peat soil. The seeds are small and can easily break if pressed hard.
Therefore, after they are evenly distributed on the surface of the substrate, they need only be pressed slightly into the soil. It is not necessary to cover them with either substrate or sand on top.
After the seeds have been sown, you need to moisten the seeds. It is recommended to water them with a sprinkler. This will keep the seeds from being washed out, and you can avoid stagnant moisture in the soil mixture, which can negatively affect young, immature seedlings.
Next, it is very important to cover the top of the box with clear glass or film. This will help to prevent the surface of the substrate from drying out and maintain the necessary level of humidity.
Do not forget to systematically air and moisten the crops, and immediately after the appearance of the first sprouts, be sure to remove the cover. Young seedlings are moved to a well-lit place, protected from direct sunlight. Also, they are provided with regular moderate watering.
It is recommended to transplant the seedlings into individual cups after the appearance of the first true leaf plates.
To be extremely careful not to injure both the stems and the root system of the plant when planting the grown seedlings in the open ground.
The first thing to do is to prepare the site for planting. The soil should be tilled beforehand and some organic matter should be added. Just before planting the plants, prepare the planting holes.
Their depth can vary from 50 to 100 mm. The width between the rows, as well as the distance between the bushes should be at least 30-35 centimeters. Plant malopa in the prepared holes and water well.
Growing malopa and lavatera in the garden plot without sprouts, watering or fertilizers.
Maintenance of malopa
Malopa growing in the open ground is very easy to care for, so even a beginning gardener can handle this task.
This culture is notable for its unpretentiousness and undemanding care. But if you want the bushes to grow strong and tall, and to be decorated with lots of flowers during flowering, then you should ensure good regular care.
When the bushes are young, they need to be watered systematically and abundantly. By watering regularly and sufficiently, the plant will adapt much more quickly and easily to its new growth conditions. And also the correct moistening of the bushes has a positive effect on their growth.
After the bushes planted in the open ground, grow up and get stronger, they are watered only as needed. During rainy summers, they can do without watering at all. However, during long hot and dry periods, do not forget to water the holly systematically, otherwise it may lose its decorative qualities.
It is also important to give plenty of attention to its nutrition when growing holly in your garden. The first thing to consider when selecting a site for planting is that the soil must necessarily be nutritious.
If the soil will initially be poor or depleted, the bush will not be able to grow and develop within the norm.
But despite the fact that malopa will be planted in fertile soil, it will still need timely fertilization throughout the growing season. It is recommended to feed such a plant with special complex mineral fertilizers designed for flowering crops. They can be purchased at specialist stores. Please note that the organic fertilizer can be added to the soil only during the preparation of the site for planting.
Afterwards it should never be used for fertilizing the hole.
Malopa growing in the open ground tolerates pruning very well and needs it for its health and tidy appearance. By cutting back fading inflorescences and other parts of the bush which are damaged or diseased, you will help speed up the growth and development of new shoots. Pruning in good time also helps to maintain a high decorative quality for a long time.
As already stated above, the annual plant Malopu can only be propagated by generative (seed) propagation.
If you already have such a beautiful plant growing in your garden, you can collect the seeds yourself. When the seeds are fully formed and mature, they can be collected, dried and put into paper bags for storage. But be very careful, because fragile seeds are easily injured.
You can also grow holegrass from seed purchased in a specialized store. And most gardeners prefer to use exactly store-bought seeds for sowing because they have a higher percentage of germination.
In the middle latitudes the seeds of malopa are not sown directly into the open soil. This plant is grown only through seedlings. Home-grown seedlings rather easily tolerate planting in the open air.
Selecting a site for growing holly in the garden you should pay special attention to several factors:
- it must be sunny;
- ground must be saturated with nutrients as well as minerals;
- ground water must be rather deep, otherwise the flower may die.
Diseases and pests
Malopa is quite resistant to both diseases and pests.
Sometimes, however, gardeners may have problems with this crop as well, especially if it is planted in an unsuitable area or if the bushes are not well maintained.
A variety of pests may settle on malope bushes, the most frequent "uninvited guests" being:
- The spider mite. It feeds on the sap of the plant, which it sucks by making small holes in the leaves and young shoots. Because of this, the leaves begin to actively turn yellow and become deformed. To save the plant from the possible negative consequences of the activity of spider mites, experts advise, as soon as possible to start treating the bush with special pesticides.
A solution of Aktellik or Fitoverm is used most often.
- Aphids. Aphids also suck insects that feed on plant sap. The affected bush shows weakening of leaves and shoots. This pest can be eliminated by the same means that are used in the fight against spider mite.
- Nematodes. Such small pests affect the underground part of the plant, more precisely, its roots. They can only be eliminated with powerful pesticides such as Carbophos, Nemagon or Zoolek Capisol.
Damage is also prone to some diseases such as:
- Judge mildew. This disease develops when there is a stagnation of moisture in the soil.
To cure the diseased plant, you can use folk remedies, such as infusion or decoction of onion husks. However, in neglected cases, it is better to immediately use a fungicide solution, such as Topaz or Fondazole.
- Rust. A diseased plant develops spots on the surface of the leaves. To cure it will require repeated treatment with a solution of copper chloroxide, Bordeaux mixture or Oxychoma.
Remember to trim off any diseased parts of the shrub before spraying.
Pictures and varieties of Malope
Malope species and varieties with photos
There are currently 3 species of Malope found and described by experts that occur in natural conditions, namely Malope anatolica, Malope trifida and Malope malacoides. The work of breeders has resulted in a large number of varieties in each of these three species.
The stout bush may be about 90 centimeters high. The large flowers of such a plant are very showy and have a maroon or white color.
This variety stands out because its flowers have an unusual bluish red color.
This variety was named so because its flowers have a snow-white color. The long stems can reach a height of about 100 cm.
This hybrid plant also stands out among the other varieties with its unusual corolla color. It can combine several hues at once: pink, white, burgundy, black etc.
From the other varieties, this plant stands out for its very large flowers that can reach up to 100 millimeters across.
This variety has the longest stems. The bush is often about 120 centimeters tall.
Malopa in landscape design
Malopa has found quite a wide use in landscape design. Depending on the variety, it is used for creating flowerbeds, rockeries, mix-boarders, mounds, etc.
Besides that the flower can be cultivated at home and is also suitable for decorating loggias and balconies. In this case the shrubs are planted in special vases, containers or pots.
The hollyhock combines very well with the following garden flowers: marigolds, dahlias, zinnias, camomiles, etc. Special attention should be paid to the choice of color scheme as well as the size of bushes.
It is not uncommon to use the hole-in-the-wall plant in a "rustic" style of site decoration.
It looks very harmonious against a fence, a wicker fence, a pergola and along paths."
Goddess, MALOPA, LAVATERA - THE MOST INCREDIBLE🌺