Garden Mallow, Botanical name Malva are related to Lavatera and Alcea (Hollyhock)
Lavatera is an easy to grow, upright shrub which bears large attractive flowers from mid-summer onwards. It will grow to around 2m which means Lavatera is a good-sized medium shrub to plant mid to back of the border, or where there is plenty of space. It is a pretty shrub which bears many flowers all summer long.In cold areas Lavatera are best against a wall to provide protection.
Lavatera is not reliably hardy in all areas and tends to short lived but does make a great addition to a border with large, saucer like blooms in pinks, white and purple with the added benefit that the flowers are long lasting. Dead heading will prolong flowering.
There are annual mallows, perennial and Shrubby Mallows, the latter of which is the Lavatera commonly grown in gardens. There are some good varieties with RHS award worth seeking if you want to plant one in your garden.
Image top left is Lavatera 'Rosea' ** and centre is L. "Barnsley"*** both of which are amongst the most popular and both with RHS garden merit award. L. barnsley is particularly pretty with its two coloured flowers. Illustrated right L. 'Kew Rose' Lavatera are tolerant of salt and so suitable for a coastal garden. With most Lavatera they are trouble free and will grow on most soils including poor, dry soil with a preference for good drainage.