Unfortunately, rusts are some of the most difficult of fungal problems to
control. and hollyhocks are extremely prone to it. If you see indications of
the rust already, it is too late to spray and the effectiveness of chemical
controls is extremely limited anyway. You have a couple of options - remove
and destroy the plants or live with it. Removing the affected foliage
(typically the bottom leaves) will slow the development of the pathogen.
Plant something low and fluffy to fill the area at the bare base of the
plants. The disease seldom advances far enough to affect blooming. Hollyhock
rust is specific to hollyhocks and other members of that family (Malvaceae).
Make sure other susceptible species are planted well away from the affected
pam - gardengal
I agree with Pam. Hollyhock rust is mostly cosmetic, and has never killed
my plants nor affected blooms; just the older, bottom leaves. I remove these
as soon as I see signs of rust, and hide the bare legs with other plants.
Whitefly can get to be bad on HH also. When the rust and whitefly get too
bothersome, I do not grow HH for a year.
This seems to break the cycle of problems for another 3-4 years.
In my experience, it's Alcea rosea and Malva sylvestris that get hit the
worst, but I've seen it on several other species. I've got another
plant, labelled as Lavatera "Creticoides" until I work out what it
really is, which also gets hit hard.
Stewart Robert Hinsley
MC, my garden is unfortunately rather small, especially the tiny patch
that receives full sun. It's here or nowhere, I'm afraid.
Thanks for the info Pam. I'll try removing the infected foliage and
see how they fare. I seem to remember Neem Oil helped somewhat last
year, so I'll give that a try as well.
The other thing I've noticed that anywhere there are hollyhocks, there
are weevils which is why I've never planted them. I like them, but I
don't like weevils and I don't spray bugs. So, I just don't plant
particular problem plants like those and roses because they seem to be
particularly tasty to aphids. Plus, if it has thorns, it has to bear
fruit. I realize some roses have nice big hips, but so far I've not
had any particular desire for rosehips ;-) I know my dad used to make
rosehip tea, but I don't like tea. Tastes like stump water to me ;-)
On Wed, 03 Mar 2004 14:00:29 -0500, Leon Fisk
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