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Plant Profile: California Globe Mallow (Iliamna latibracteata)

Also known as California wild hollyhock, this rare herbaceous perennial is a member of the mallow family,  Malvaceae, that also includes okra, cotton, and hibiscus.   It is endemic to the coniferous forests of the Klamath Mountains in northwestern California and southwestern Oregon where it grows along streamsides and roadsides, and in woodland borders and meadows..  Plants grow 3.3-6.6′ tall from a woody caudex and have hairy stems that carry palmate leaves on slender petioles.  Each leaf is up to 8″ long and has  5 or 7 pointed lobes. In June and July cup-shaped flowers appear in the leaf  axils singly or in small clusters. The flowers are pink or lavender and have 5 petals about 1″ long.  The genus name, Iliamna, is of unknown origin.  the specific epithet, latibracteata, comes from the Latin words latus meaning broad, and bracteata, meaning bract (a leaf-like structure usually at the base of the flowers).

Type: Herbaceous perennial

Bloom: Cup-shaped pink or lavender flowers singly or in clusters in June and July

Size: 3.3-6.6′ H

Light: Part sun to part shade

Soil: Average, moist, well-drained

Hardiness: Zones 8-9 but not heat tolerant

Care: Not available

Pests and Diseases: Not available

Propagation: Not Available

Companion Plants: Yarrow (Achillea millefolioum), monkshood (Aconitum columbrianum), vanilla leaf (Achlys triphylla), western eupatorium (Ageratina occidentalis)