My hollyhocks spread out instead of growing up. What happened?
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
If something nips the top off the top of the plant, it will grow outward instead of upward. The top can be removed or damaged by some kind of pest, either animal or insect. Often, it is something like a deer who munches the plant early in spring. The plant recovers from the damage, but grows outward instead of upward.