Mallow, or Malva, L.a genus of plants consisting of 53 species, four of which are natives of Britain : the principal of the latter is the syIvestris, Common Mallow, or Mauls, growing in hedges, foot-paths, and among rubbish; flowering from June to August-The leaves of the Common Mallow possess a mucilaginous, sweetish taste, and were formerly often used in food, with a view to prevent cos-tiveness. At present, decoctions of this plant are sometimes prescribed in dysenteries, and urinary complaints; though it is chiefly employed in emollient cataplasms, clysters, and fomentations.—The flowers are eagerly visited by bees, which obtain from them an abundant supply of honey.
All the species of mallow, both indigenous and exotic, are beautiful plants, well calculated for ornamenting gardens, and affording grateful food to cattle; as they may be easily propagated by seed. But there are three, viz. the Crispa, or Curled Mallow ; the Peruviana, or Peruvian Mallow; and the Mau-ritiana, or Mauritian Mallow; which, when macerated like hemp, afford a thread much superior for spinning, to that obtained from the latter vegetable; and the cloth made of the three species before mentioned, is said to be more beautiful than that manufactured of flax. From the curled mallow, which produces the strongest and longest fibres, excellent cordage and twine have been procured; and M. de Lisle fabricated a new kind of paper from different species of the mallow, which not only served for the purposes of writing and printing, but also appeared to be eminently useful for drawing, and for the hanging of apartments.