Malva sylvestris L.

Tall Mallow

Sp. Pl. 689 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Biennial or perennial, stems erect or decumbent, to 1.5 m long. Leaves c. reniform to orbicular, cordate at base, c. 3–8 cm long and wide, usually shallowly 5-lobed, margins crenate or irregularly toothed, surfaces glabrous, or usually with scattered simple (rarely stellate) hairs mainly along nerves. Epicalyx-lobes elliptic, 3–6 mm long, attached in lower third of calyx; calyx shortly exceeding epicalyx, obtusely lobed to c. midway, enlarged slightly and the lobes incurved in fruit; petals 12–30 mm long, pink to purple with darker veins. Fruit c. 8 mm diam., mericarps c. 10–15, strongly reticulate, adjacent margins ± smooth, glabrous to sparsely hispid. Flowers Nov.–Feb.

*CVU, *GipP, *HNF, *HSF, *NIS, *Strz, *VVP. Also naturalised Qld, NSW, Tas. Native to Europe, North Africa, south-west Asia. A weed of gardens and crops, but rare or overlooked (collected from Yackandandah, Heidelberg, Warragul districts).

Source: Walsh, N.G. (1996). Malva. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 3, Dicotyledons Winteraceae to Myrtaceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2018-10-12
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Rosanae
order Malvales
family Malvaceae
genus Malva
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Malva sylvestris in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Malva sylvestris in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Volcanic Plain present naturalised
Gippsland Plain present naturalised
Central Victorian Uplands present naturalised
Northern Inland Slopes present introduced
Highlands-Southern Fall present naturalised
Highlands-Northern Fall present naturalised
Strzelecki Ranges present introduced

State distribution

Distribution map
Northern Territory
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory