Sidalcea malviflora

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Sidalcea malviflora
Sidalcea malviflora ssp malviflora 3.jpg
Sidalcea malviflora ssp. malviflora

Secure (NatureServe)
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Malvales
Family: Malvaceae
Genus: Sidalcea
S. malviflora
Binomial name
Sidalcea malviflora

Sidalcea malviflora is a species of flowering plant in the mallow family, known by the common names dwarf checkerbloom,[1] Greek mallow,[2] prairie mallow[3] and dwarf checkermallow.


Sidalcea malviflora is native to the West Coast of the United States, from Washington to California, and into northwestern Baja California. It is a common plant of chaparral, coastal sage scrub, and other habitat types.


Sidalcea malviflora is somewhat variable in appearance and there are many subspecies. In general it is a perennial herb growing from a woody caudex and rhizome, its stem reaching about 60 centimeters in maximum height. It is sparsely to densely hairy in texture. The leaf blades are variable in shape, but are often divided deeply into several lobes. The inflorescence is a dense or loose array of several flowers. The flower has five petals in shades of bright to dark pink, often with white veining, and measuring one to over three centimeters in length.

Flower of Sidalcea malviflora ssp. laciniata.
Sidalcea malviflora.

Subspecies and endemics[edit]

There are over ten subspecies, some of which are endemic and rare:. They include:[4]

  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. californica — California checkerbloom.
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. dolosaendemic to the San Bernardino Mountains.[5]
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. laciniata
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. laciniata var. laciniata
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. laciniata var. sancta
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. malviflora — Checker mallow [6]
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. patula — Siskiyou checkerbloom — endemic to far northwestern California and southwestern Oregon.[7]
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. purpurea — Purple-stemmed checkerbloom — endemic to the California coast just north of the San Francisco Bay Area.[8]
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. rostrata
  • Sidalcea malviflora ssp. virgata — Dwarf checkerbloom [9]


Sidalcea malviflora is cultivated as an ornamental plant, for use in traditional, native plant, water conserving, and wildlife gardens.

Cultivars have been selected for flower colors and size qualities, they include:

  • Sidalcea malviflora 'Little Princess'
  • Sidalcea malviflora 'Palustre' — Palustre Checkerbloom — more compact and a heavier bloom produced.[10]
  • Sidalcea malviflora 'Party Girl'
  • Sidalcea malviflora 'Rosanna' — Rosanna Checker Mallow [11]


It is a larval host to the West Coast lady[12].

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Sidalcea malviflora". Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database. USDA. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  2. ^ "BSBI List 2007". Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-01-25. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
  3. ^ "Prairie Mallow". Home Gardening - Flower Growing Guides. Cornell University. 2006. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
  4. ^ USDA: Sidalcea malviflora subspecies and varieties
  5. ^ Jepson: Sidalcea malviflora ssp. dolosa
  6. ^ Calflora: Sidalcea malviflora ssp. malviflora
  7. ^ CNPS: Sidalcea malviflora ssp. patula
  8. ^ CNPS: Sidalcea malviflora ssp. purpurea
  9. ^ USDA: Sidalcea malviflora ssp. virgata (dwarf checkerbloom)
  10. ^ Theodore Payne Foundation, California Natives Wiki: Sidalcea malviflora 'Palustre'
  11. ^ Daves Garden blog: Sidalcea malviflora 'Rosanna'
  12. ^ The Xerces Society (2016), Gardening for Butterflies: How You Can Attract and Protect Beautiful, Beneficial Insects, Timber Press.

External links[edit]