Perennial | 70 days to flower | 3 years to root harvest | Althaea officinalis
A cousin of the hollyhock, we love Marshmallow for her velvet foliage and humble yet elegant flowers on vigorous 4- to 6-foot plants with gentle, deeply healing medicinal qualities. Impressively drought-tolerant, marshmallow thrives in moist areas, as well. Her young leaves in spring we also pluck for salad!
Marshmallow root is nutritious, soothing to the digestion, stimulating to the immune system and helping prevent and repair ulcerations. It also soothes irritated membranes and relieves hacking, uncontrollable coughs. Similar in function to Slippery Elm, Marshmallow is a much more sustainable alternative. Steep her roots in cold water for several hours rather than boiling the root for optimum medicinal benefit. We also steep her in oil with calendula with plantain for a healing salve, inspired by Geraldine of Suntrap Botanical outside Ithaca.
At Fruition, we sow marshmallow indoors in soil blocks four weeks before final frost, transplanting out after final frost.
Sow Seeds & Sing Songs,
& the whole Fruition Crew