Henderson’s Checkermallow

In our yard, bees and butterflies love the colorful bright pink flowers of Henderson’s Checkermallow (Sidalcea hendersonii).  Also called Marsh Hollyhock, it blooms all summer.  The foliage is glossy green and its leaves have two different shapes; the stem leaves are more divided than the scalloped, rounded basal leaves.

Henderson’s Checkermallow is rather rare in the wild (it is on the “Watch” list of the Washington Natural Heritage Program), growing close to the ocean and Puget Sound from southern BC south to southern Oregon.  In nature, it usually grows in wet areas like tidal marshes and wet meadows, though can occur in drier locations.  It is EASY to grow in the garden in full sun to light shade and often seeds itself.  I have one growing in very well-drained soil and it is doing well, though maybe won’t get as big as it might – 4-5’ – in a wetter place.

Go play outside!

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