Common Mallow is a beautiful wildflower from the mallow family. Known as Mauve in France, it is where the word for the colour comes from.
The original “marshmallows” were made using the roots of mallows, and were used to treat coughs and chest infections. Due to their high mucilage content the roots were also used to make soothing ointments and poultices.
The leaves contain a resin which, when cooked, releases a gummy substance. They can be used to thicken stews or soups, although excessive consumption of the leaves can act as a laxative!
When the flowers fruit, the seeds look like miniature cheese wheels, hence the plant being commonly referred to as the “cheese-weed”!