Malva moschata | ‘Musk Mallow’ | ~125 seeds
Native to large swathes of Europe and south-western Asia, Malva moschata (‘Musk Mallow’) is an attractive herbaceous flowering species of the Malvaceae family. It’s popularly cultivated as an ornamental and for use in wild salads (both the seeds and leaves are edible).
Malva moschata grows to roughly sixty centimetres to ninety centimetres tall, producing hairy stems and deeply cut foliage. Its bright pink to white, summer-blooming flowers (approximately three to five centimetres in diameter) are saucer-shaped and have a distinctly musky aroma, inspiring moschata‘s evocative informal species name. There are several popular cultivars of this perennial species; notably, the white-flowered Malva moschata ‘Alba’, which has been awarded the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit. Moschata is also sometimes observed to sometimes form natural hybrids with Malva alcea (a close relative).
Moschata prefers fertile, well-drained habitats, at altitudes from sea level to roughly one and a half thousand metres. ‘Musk Mallow’ seed remains viable in soil for many years and is often found growing in locations such as hedges, meadows, roadside verges and wasteland.
It’s an easy and attractive species to grow from seed in USDA Hardiness Zones 3-10. Sow roughly two centimetres apart, in fertile, mildly acidic to mildly alkaline soil. Lightly tamp the seeds down just below the surface of the soil and place in full sun, keeping the soil consistently moist.
All the seed sold by Arkham’s Botanical was freshly and ethically sourced in 2018