Mallow (Malva)

Other names:  cheese plant, dwarf mallow, low mallow, high mallow, malva rotundifolia, tall mallow

Scientific name: Malva sylvestris, M. neglecta

Common names:                                          

Ayurvedic names: Gul-khair

Chinese names:

Bangladesh names: 

Arabic names:    خبيزة (khubbeizah)

Rain Forest names:

Family: Malvaceae 

Approximate number of species known:

Common parts used: Flower, leaf


Annual/Perennial:  “annual in North Africa,[7] biennial[5][8] in the Mediterranean[7] and a perennial elsewhere”


Actions: Demulcent, diuretic,  anti-inflammatory, expectorant, astrigent, emolient

Known Constituents: Mucilage, tannin, vit a, vit b, vit c, zinc

Constituents Explained:


A weed with creeping brNCHING STEMS.  The stems are 6-24 inches long. The leaves have 5-7 lobes (picture) and are onh long petioles (picture)  The flowers are trumjpet shpaed. sessile (picture) and purple and grow in small clustered axils off the sides of the stems.

It likes to grow in moist soil,  with a pH of 5.5-6.5. The leaf can grow 15cm across or more.  When broken the stem releaes a slimy sap. The fruit is round and flat and vaguely resembles the shape of a wheel of cheese.

Traditional Use:

High in Vitamin A.  Generally the Vitamin A level is estimated as 268,000 units per pound.  The leaf has a generally pleasant taste for most and has been eaten as a vegetable.  The flowers when young are sometimes used in salads.

It tends to be used as a soothing agent in reducing inflammation, pain, sore throats.  Has been used to produce more milk in nursing mother.

Externally it has been used for abscesses, burns and minor boils.

Clinical Studies: