Description – A rich cottage garden mixture of colourful pastel shades. The Antwerp blend has attractive and unusual palmate foliage, and is also shown to have the best levels of resistance to the common Hollyhock problem of rust. Excellent for borders, especially planted in groups. Height: 150-180cm (5-6ft).
Sowing – Sow February to March or September to October. Germinate at 15-20C (59-68F) on the surface of a good free draining, damp seed compost. Cover with a very fine sprinkling of compost or vermiculite. Place in a propagator or seal container inside a polythene bag until after germination which usually takes 14-21 days. Do not exclude light, as this helps germination.
Alternatively, sow late summer in a cool greenhouse and overwinter plants in cool, well lit conditions. Plant out the following spring. This produces larger plants and is recommended if the soil is heavy or badly drained.
Growing – Transplant seedlings when large enough to handle into trays or 7.5cm (3in) pots. Grow on in cooler conditions for 1-15 days before planting out after all risk of frost, 45cm (18in) apart.
Aftercare – Prefers a well cultivated soil in a sheltered position.
Flowers – July to August