Growing hollyhocks from seeds is probably the easiest way to incorporate these China natives into your garden. While hollyhocks are usually biennials in USDA zones 3 to 8, they can be grown as annuals or perennials as well. These beauties can grow from 6 to 10 feet tall, with lovely large flowers covering them during the summer months. Their blossoms come in a myriad of colors, from red to pink to white.
Choose a place to plant your hollyhock seeds. Hollyhocks grow best in full sun with moist well drained soil. Add compost or manure to improve the quality of your soil if needed.
Plant hollyhock seeds in the spring or fall. (ref 3) If you want to plant in the fall set the seeds out a week or 2 before the first frost. If you are planting them in the spring, set the seeds out a week or 2 before the last frost. Planting in the fall is best for biennial hollyhocks while planting in the spring is best for perennial hollyhocks.
Till the soil in which you want to plant the hollyhocks. Work it until it is loose and moist.
Sprinkle the seeds on the ground in a row. The seeds can be sown close together and you can move them later if needed. Cover the seeds with a 1/4 inch layer of loose soil.
Water the hollyhocks until the soil is moist. Water the hollyhocks 3 to 4 times a week to keep the soil moist.
Allow the hollyhocks to grow. If they crowd each other, move them while they are only 1 to 3 feet tall. Space them 3 to 4 feet apart from each other.