I purchased 11 hollyhock plants from a very reputable garden center in the spring of this year. They grew beautifully for the fist month or so. They grew the pods up the stem like they were supposed to, but the pods never opened. They continue to grow and are very tall and pretty, but minus any flowers. We treated the soil as they suggested, and they get plenty of sun/shade and are not planted close to each other, about 12-18 inches apart. I LOVE them, but am curious if this is what they do the first year. As I said, I had beautiful blossoms all the way up the stem for the first month or two. Any suggestions would really be appreciated. I live in Michigan, just north a few miles from Grand Rapids on the west side of the state. I plan to cut them to the ground in the fall. Thank you for your time! I hope you can advise me because I have loved this plant since I was a child. My mom had them for years. Unfortunately, she isn't here to help!
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
You likely have a biennial hollyhock. It germinates the first year but will not flower till the next. Leave the pods until they crack open then clip them (you can leave some to self seed if you would like) remove the seeds and keep them in a baggie until spring.