Common mallow Malva neglecta Wallr.
Family: Malvaceae (mallow family)
Life cycle: Annual or biennial
Native status: Introduced,
Habitat: Low maintenance turf; landscapes; waste areas
General description: Prostrate to decumbent growth habit, stems up to 2 ft long. Leaves alternate, long petioled, round to kidney shape with crenate margin (rounded teeth). Short hairs on leaves and stems give them a rough texture. Flowers have five white petals, usually with violet veins. Fruit is a flattened disk containing 10-20 carpels.
Key ID traits: Round leaves with long petioles and crenate margin; decumbent growth habit. Stems covered with stiff pubescence.
Similar species: The leaves of common mallow are similar in shape to ground ivy; however, leaves of mallow are alternate versus the opposite of ground ivy. Also, common mallow leaves are rough due to pubescence and lack the minty odor of ground ivy
Miscellaneous: A medicinal herb that was introduced from Europe. Also referred to as cheeseweed since the circular fruit resembles a wheel of cheese.