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Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Rosids
Cladus: Eurosids II
Ordo: Malvales

Familia: Malvaceae
Subfamilia: Malvoideae
Tribus: Malveae
Genus: Malva
Sectiones: M. sect. Bibracteolatae – M. sect. Bismalva – M. sect. Creticae – M. sect. Malva

Species: M. aegyptia – M. aethiopica – M. alcea – M. assurgentiflora – M. australiana – M. cretica – M. dendromorpha – M. hispanica – M. linnaei – M. moschata – M. neglecta – M. nicaeensis – M. occidentalis – M. pacifica – M. parviflora – M. pusilla – M. sylvestris – M. tournefortiana – M. transcaucasica – M. verticillata
M. alcea - M. assurgentiflora - M. australiana - M. cretica - M. dendromorpha - M. hispanica - M. linnaei - M. moschata - M. neglecta - M. nicaeensis - M. occidentalis - M. pacifica - M. parviflora - M. pusilla - M. sylvestris - M. tournefortiana - M. verticillata -


Malva L., Sp. Pl. 2: 687. 1753.
Type species: Malva sylvestris L.


Axolopha (DC.) Alef., Oesterr. Bot. Z. 12: 258. 1862.
Type species: non design.
Dinacrusa G.Krebs, Feddes Repert. 105: 299. 1994.
Type species: Dinacrusa hirsuta (L.) G.Krebs
Anthema Medik.
Bismalva Medik.
Lavatera L. needs refs
Navaea Webb & Berthel.
Olbia Medik.
Saviniona Webb & Berthel.
Stegia DC.


Linnaeus, C. 1753. Species Plantarum 2: 687.
Davis, C.J. 2010. Malva aethiopica, a new name for Lavatera abyssinica (Malvaceae): an endemic species of the Ethiopian Highlands. Phytotaxa 13(1): 56-58. ResearchGate
Farr, E. R. & Zijlstra, G. eds. (1996-) Index Nominum Genericorum (Plantarum). 2010 Febr 15 [1].
Hinsley, S.R. 2009. Malvaceae Info. The Malva Alliance. 2010 Feb 19 [2].
Govaerts, R. et al. 2021. Malva in Kew Science Plants of the World online. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Jan 6. Reference page.
Hassler, M. 2021. Malva. World Plants: Synonymic Checklists of the Vascular Plants of the World In: Roskovh, Y., Abucay, L., Orrell, T., Nicolson, D., Bailly, N., Kirk, P., Bourgoin, T., DeWalt, R.E., Decock, W., De Wever, A., Nieukerken, E. van, Zarucchi, J. & Penev, L., eds. 2021. Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Jan. 6. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2021. Malva. Published online. Accessed: Jan. 6 2021. 2021. Malva. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Jan. 6.

Vernacular names
العربية: خبازة
azərbaycanca: Əməköməci
башҡортса: Бесәй тырнағы
беларуская: Мальва
čeština: sléz
dansk: Katost
Deutsch: Malven
dolnoserbski: Slěz
English: Mallows
Esperanto: Malvo
eesti: Kassinaeris
فارسی: پنیرک
suomi: Malvat
français: Malva
עברית: חלמית
hornjoserbsce: Šlěz
magyar: Mályva
հայերեն: Փիփերթ
日本語: ゼニアオイ属
ქართული: ბალბა
қазақша: Құлқайыр
lietuvių: Dedešva
Nederlands: Kaasjeskruid
norsk: Kattoster
Ирон: Бæгъа
polski: Ślaz
Runa Simi: Malwa
русский: Мальва
slovenčina: slez
svenska: Malvasläktet
Türkçe: Ebegümeci
удмурт: Дуэтаба
українська: Мальва
中文: 錦葵屬

Malva is a genus of herbaceous annual, biennial, and perennial plants in the family Malvaceae (of which it is the type genus), one of several closely related genera in the family to bear the common English name mallow. The genus is widespread throughout the temperate, subtropical and tropical regions of Africa, Asia and Europe.[3]

The leaves are alternate, palmately lobed. The flowers are from 0.5–5 cm diameter, with five pink, lilac, purple or white petals.


The word "mallow" is derived from Old English "mealwe", which was imported from Latin "malva", cognate with Ancient Greek μαλάχη (malakhē) meaning "mallow", both perhaps reflecting a Mediterranean term.[4]

The colour mauve was in 1859 named after the French name for this plant.
Wild Cheeseweed Field, Behbahan
Wild Cheeseweed Field, Behbahan
Ornamental plant

Several species are widely grown as garden flowers. Very easily grown, short-lived perennials are often grown as ornamental plants.[5]

Many species are edible as leaf vegetables[5] and commonly foraged in the West. Known as ebegümeci in Turkish, it is used as vegetable in Turkey in various forms such as stuffing the leaves with bulgur or rice or using the boiled leaves as side dish. Malva verticillata (Chinese: 冬寒菜; pinyin: dōngháncài, Korean: 아욱 auk) is grown on a limited commercial scale in China; when made as a herbal infusion, it is used for its colon cleansing properties and as a weight loss supplement.

In the Levant, Malva nicaeensis leaves and fruit are used a food, khubeza patties.

Mild tasting, young mallow leaves can be a substitute for lettuce, whereas older leaves are better cooked as a leafy green vegetable. The buds and flowers can be used in salads. Small fruits that grow on the plants can also be eaten raw.[5]

Bodos of Northeast India cultivate a subspecies of Malva called lapha and use it extensively in their traditional cuisine, although its use is not much known among other people of India except in the northern Indian state of Kashmir where Malva leaves are a highly cherished vegetable dish. It is called "Soachal".
Medical use

In Catalonia (Spain) they use the leaves to cure the sting or paresthesia of the stinging nettle (Urtica dioica).

Leaves of various species Malva have been used in traditional Austrian medicine internally as tea or externally as baths for treatment of disorders of the skin, gastrointestinal tract and respiratory tract.[6] The leaves can also be chewed to soothe coughs or sore throats.[5]

Cultivation is by sowing the seeds directly outdoors in early spring. The seed is easy to collect, and they will often spread themselves by seed.

Some Malva species are invasive weeds, particularly in the Americas where they are not native.[3]

This plant is one of the earliest cited in recorded literature. The third century BC physician Diphilus of Siphnus wrote that "[mallow] juice lubricates the windpipe, nourishes, and is easily digested."[7] Horace mentions it in reference to his own diet, which he describes as very simple: "Me pascunt olivae, / me cichorea levesque malvae" ("As for me, olives, endives, and mallows provide sustenance").[8] Lord Monboddo describes his translation of an ancient epigram that demonstrates Malva was planted upon the graves of the ancients, stemming from the belief that the dead could feed on such perfect plants.[9]


The following species are accepted:[3]

Malva acerifolia (Cav.) Alef.
Malva × adulterina Wallr.
Malva aegyptia L.
Malva aethiopica C.J.S.Davis
Malva agrigentina (Tineo) Soldano, Banfi & Galasso
Malva alcea L. – greater musk-mallow, vervain mallow
Malva arborea (L.) Webb & Berthel.
Malva × arbosii Sennen
Malva assurgentiflora (Kellogg) M.F.Ray – island mallow, mission mallow, royal mallow, island tree mallow
Malva bucharica Iljin
Malva cachemiriana (Cambess.) Alef.
Malva cavanillesiana Raizada
Malva × clementii (Cheek) Stace
Malva × columbretensis (Juan & M.B.Crespo) Juan & M.B.Crespo
Malva cretica Cav.
Malva durieui Spach
Malva × egarensis Cadevall
Malva flava (Desf.) Alef.
Malva hispanica L.
Malva × inodora Ponert
Malva × intermedia Boreau
Malva leonardii I.Riedl
Malva lindsayi (Moran) M.F.Ray
Malva × litoralis Dethard. ex Rchb.
Malva longiflora (Boiss. & Reut.) Soldano, Banfi & Galasso
Malva ludwigii (L.) Soldano, Banfi & Galasso
Malva lusitanica (L.) Valdés
Malva maroccana (Batt. & Trab.) Verloove & Lambinon
Malva microphylla (Baker f.) Molero & J.M.Monts.
Malva moschata L. – musk-mallow
Malva multiflora (Cav.) Soldano, Banfi & Galasso
Malva neglecta Wallr. – dwarf mallow, buttonweed, cheeseplant, cheeseweed, common mallow, roundleaf mallow
Malva nicaeensis All. – French mallow, bull mallow
Malva oblongifolia (Boiss.) Soldano, Banfi & Galasso
Malva occidentalis (S.Watson) M.F.Ray
Malva olbia (L.) Alef.
Malva oxyloba Boiss.
Malva pacifica M.F.Ray
Malva pamiroalaica Iljin
Malva parviflora L. – least mallow, cheeseweed, cheeseweed mallow, small-whorl mallow
Malva phoenicea (Vent.) Alef.
Malva preissiana Miq. – Australian hollyhock
Malva punctata (All.) Alef.
Malva pusilla Sm. – small mallow
Malva qaiseri Abedin
Malva setigera K.F.Schimp. & Spenn.
Malva stenopetala (Coss. & Durieu ex Batt.) Soldano, Banfi & Galasso
Malva stipulacea Cav.
Malva subovata (DC.) Molero & J.M.Monts.
Malva sylvestris L. – common mallow, high mallow
Malva × tetuanensis Pau
Malva thuringiaca (L.) Vis.
Malva tournefortiana L.
Malva trimestris (L.) Salisb.
Malva unguiculata (Desf.) Alef.
Malva valdesii (Molero & J.M.Monts.) Soldano, Banfi & Galasso
Malva verticillata L. – Chinese mallow, cluster mallow
Malva vidalii (Pau) Molero & J.M.Monts.
Malva waziristanensis Blatt.
Malva weinmanniana (Besser ex Rchb.) Conran
Malva xizangensis Y.S.Ye, L.Fu & D.X.Duan


"Malva L." Germplasm Resources Information Network. United States Department of Agriculture. 12 March 2007. Archived from the original on 6 May 2009. Retrieved 16 February 2010.
"Malva L." Index Nominum Genericorum. International Association for Plant Taxonomy. 9 February 1996. Retrieved 9 May 2008.
"Malva Tourn. ex L." Plants of the World Online. Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. 2017. Retrieved 14 June 2021.
O.E.D (1989) 2nd.ed. vol.IX, p.271 col.3; P.Chantraine, Dictionnaire de la langue grecque, Klincksieck, Paris 1968, vol.2 p.662. The Italian linguist Vincenzo Cocco proposed an etymological link to Georgian malokhi, comparing also Hebrew מַלּוּחַ (malúakh) meaning "salty". Gordon Douglas Young, Mark William Chavalas, Richard E. Averbeck, Kevin L. Danti, (eds.) Crossing boundaries and linking horizons: studies in honor of Michael C. Astour on his 80th birthday, CDL Press, 1997 pp.162-3.
Nyerges, Christopher (2016). Foraging Wild Edible Plants of North America: More than 150 Delicious Recipes Using Nature's Edibles. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 100. ISBN 978-1-4930-1499-6.
Vogl, Sylvia; Picker, Paolo; Mihaly-Bison, Judit; Fakhrudin, Nanang; Atanasov, Atanas G.; Heiss, Elke H.; Wawrosch, Christoph; Reznicek, Gottfried; Dirsch, Verena M.; Saukel, Johannes; Kopp, Brigitte (2013). "Ethnopharmacological in vitro studies on Austria's folk medicine—An unexplored lore in vitro anti-inflammatory activities of 71 Austrian traditional herbal drugs". Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 149 (3): 750–71. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2013.06.007. PMC 3791396. PMID 23770053.
Soyer, Alexis (1853). The Pantropheon: Or, History of Food and Its Preparation : from the Earliest Ages of the World. Ticknor, Reed, and Fields. p. 64.
Horace, Odes 31, ver 15, c. 30 BC
Letter from Monboddo to John Hope, 29 April 1779; reprinted by William Knight 1900 ISBN 1-85506-207-0.[

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