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Uses

Toxic parts

When grown on nitrogen rich soils (and particularly when these are used inorganically), the plant tends to concentrate high levels of nitrates in its leaves[1]. The leaves are perfectly wholesome at all other times.

Edible uses

Notes

Leaves - raw or cooked[K]. A mild pleasant flavour[K]. The leaves are mucilaginous and fairly bland, we use them in bulk in summer salads[K]. They make a very good perennial substitute for lettuce in a salad, producing fresh leaves from spring until the middle of summer, or until the autumn from spring germinating plants[K].

Flowers - raw[K]. A very decorative addition to the salad bowl, they have a very mild flavour[K].

Seed - raw. Best used before it is fully mature, the seed has a pleasant nutty taste but it is rather small and fiddly to harvest[K].

Flowers

Leaves

Material uses

Cream, yellow and green dyes can be obtained from the plant and the seed heads[2]. A fibre obtained from the stems is used for cordage, textiles and paper making[3].

Unknown part

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

All parts of the plant are antiphlogistic, astringent, demulcent, diuretic, emollient, expectorant, laxative, salve[4][5][6][7][8][9][10]. The leaves and flowers can be eaten as part of the diet, or a tea can be made from the leaves, flowers or roots[9]. The leaves and flowers are the main part used, their demulcent properties making them valuable as a poultice for bruise, inflammations, insect bites etc, or taken internally in the treatment of respiratory system diseases or inflammation of the digestive or urinary systems[4][10]. They have similar properties, but are considered to be inferior, to the common mallow (M. sylvestris) and the marsh mallow (Althaea officinalis) and are seldom used internally[4]. The plant is an excellent laxative for young children[5].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - best sown in early spring in a cold frame. The seed germinates quickly and easily. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out in their permanent positions in the early summer[K].

If you have sufficient seed then it can be sown outdoors in situ in the middle to late spring. Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest the shoots with plenty of underground stem when they are about 8 - 10cm above the ground. Pot them up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the summer.

Cuttings of side shoots, July/August in a cold frame[11].

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Malva moschata. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

A very easily grown plant, succeeding in ordinary garden soil[12], though it prefers a reasonably well-drained and moderately fertile soil in a sunny position[13].

Hardy to about -25°c[14]. A very ornamental plant[12]. It is very variable in form, especially with regard to the degree of laciniation of the leaves[15]. The crushed leaves have a musk-like smell[16]. Plants are generally quite short-lived though they can self-sow freely when in a suitable position and usually more than maintain themselves[233, K]. If the plant is pruned back to the main branches as it comes into flower, then it will produce a fresh flush of leaves in late summer for salad use[K]. A good plant for the summer meadow[17]. Plants seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits[18].

Prone to infestation by rust fungus[13].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Malva moschata. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Malva moschata.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Malva moschata
Genus
Malva
Family
Malvaceae
Imported References
Edible uses
Medicinal uses
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
3
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
light shade
Soil PH
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
  • Strong wind
Ecosystems
Native Climate Zones
None listed.
Adapted Climate Zones
None listed.
Native Geographical Range
None listed.
Native Environment
None listed.
Ecosystem Niche
None listed.
Root Zone Tendancy
None listed.
Life
Deciduous or Evergreen
?
Herbaceous or Woody
?
Life Cycle
Growth Rate
?
Mature Size
Fertility
Pollinators
Flower Colour
?
Flower Type

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References

  1. ? Cooper. M. and Johnson. A. Poisonous Plants in Britain and their Effects on Animals and Man. HMSO ISBN 0112425291 (1984-00-00)
  2. ? 2.02.1 Grae. I. Nature's Colors - Dyes from Plants. MacMillan Publishing Co. New York. ISBN 0-02-544950-8 (1974-00-00)
  3. ? 3.03.1 Johnson. C. P. The Useful Plants of Great Britain. ()
  4. ? 4.04.14.24.3 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
  5. ? 5.05.15.2 Chiej. R. Encyclopaedia of Medicinal Plants. MacDonald ISBN 0-356-10541-5 (1984-00-00)
  6. ? 6.06.1 Launert. E. Edible and Medicinal Plants. Hamlyn ISBN 0-600-37216-2 (1981-00-00)
  7. ? 7.07.1 Lust. J. The Herb Book. Bantam books ISBN 0-553-23827-2 (1983-00-00)
  8. ? 8.08.1 Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim (1959-00-00)
  9. ? 9.09.19.2 Foster. S. & Duke. J. A. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America. Houghton Mifflin Co. ISBN 0395467225 (1990-00-00)
  10. ? 10.010.110.2 Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
  11. ? Sanders. T. W. Popular Hardy Perennials. Collingridge (1926-00-00)
  12. ? 12.012.1 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
  13. ? 13.013.113.2 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
  14. ? Phillips. R. & Rix. M. Perennials Volumes 1 and 2. Pan Books ISBN 0-330-30936-9 (1991-00-00)
  15. ? 15.015.1 Clapham, Tootin and Warburg. Flora of the British Isles. Cambridge University Press (1962-00-00)
  16. ? Genders. R. Scented Flora of the World. Robert Hale. London. ISBN 0-7090-5440-8 (1994-00-00)
  17. ? Baines. C. Making a Wildlife Garden. ()
  18. ? Thomas. G. S. Perennial Garden Plants J. M. Dent & Sons, London. ISBN 0 460 86048 8 (1990-00-00)

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