En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - April 16, 2008

From: Georgetown, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Disease on non-native French hollyhocks
Answered by:

QUESTION:

I live in Georgetown, Texas. I have some French hollyhocks that have some kind of disease on the leaves - I would like to know what to spray them with to get rid of it. It looks like brown blemishes all over the leaf and the blemishes are small and round. It really looks gross. One of our local nurseries said it might be a bacteria of some kind but they weren't that helpful. I pulled off the infected leaves and the new growth eventually got the same thing. Please help! The plants have been hearty and a dark green until about a month ago.

ANSWER:

The French hollyhock is a lovely old garden flower; in fact, legend has it that Thomas Jefferson grew it at Monticello. That does not mean, however, that it is native to North America, indeed, it is native to Europe, north to Scandinavia and east to Russia and the Caucasus. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the care and propagation of plants native to North America, so this is a little out of our field of expertise. However, we are always glad to help out, if we can, with problems gardeners are having with their plants. We hunted around for information on Malva sylvestris, French hollyhock, and mostly found that it had no serious insect or disease problems, although Japanes beetles can be a problem, where present. We did find one reference with said that the Malva sylvestris can be prone to rust fungus. Not having a clue what that was, we searched some more and found this website on rust fungus that is probably going to tell you more than you ever wanted to know, but there are a lot of pictures you can compare to the blemishes on your flowers. If you feel that is the problem, ask your nursery to recommend a good fungicide, and apply it exactly as instructed. Good luck!

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Will deer eat lemon cypress trees from Hayden ID
June 02, 2012 - Do deer eat lemon cypress trees? We do not think so since they are so spiny, but wanted a clarification.
view the full question and answer

Non-native Sandankwa viburnum (Viburnum suspensum) damaged by freeze
April 16, 2006 - We live in Georgetown. My Sandankwa Viburnum seem to have been affected by the late freeze. There are now very few leaves and no flowers/buds. Should I cut the plants back, leave them alone, or giv...
view the full question and answer

Safe distance from foundation for Sycamore from Preston UK
August 24, 2011 - What would be the safe distance to have a sycamore tree near your house so it doesn't affect the foundations?
view the full question and answer

Dwarf evergreen heath plant from Norcross GA
February 01, 2010 - I was reading a book that mentioned a "dwarf evergreen heath plant and wondered if such a plant exist. It is suppose to have leathery leave blooms with white flowers that produce red berries used fo...
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native weeping willow from Hazlet NJ
July 03, 2013 - Leaves turning yellow on weeping willow planted in May. What causes this and how can I fix it? Mother's Day gift after SANDY uprooted huge tree.
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center