Lavatera (Lavatera thuringiaca) is a hardy, fast-growing evergreen shrub with attractive greyish-green foliage and pinkish-lavender flowers that will cover the plant non-stop from spring until summer. Lavatera, also known as tree mallow, is a sturdy, drought-tolerant plant that will grow in nearly any well-drained soil. Although the plant will grow in partial shade, it will look its best when planted in full sunlight. As an added benefit, the sweet nectar will attract honeybees, butterflies and hummingbirds to your garden.
Water lavatera deeply by allowing a garden hose or soaker to run slowly at the base of the plant. Allow the top of the soil to dry out before the next watering. Lavatera is drought-tolerant but won't do well in soggy soil.
Spread 3 to 4 inches of mulch in a circle 2 to 3 feet out from the trunk. Organic mulch, such as straw, compost, pine needles or dry grass clippings will retain moisture and control weeds. Apply fresh mulch every spring.
Prune lavatera in late winter or early spring. Prune as needed to restore the plant's desired shape and size. Remove any leggy or spindly branches along with any growth damaged during the winter.