Hollyhocks grow like weeds here in my garden, which sounds lovely and romantic except for the massive infestation of assorted insects all over the plants. This year my cream double hollyhock was terminated by a veritable explosion of insect activity. Intriguingly, close inspection revealed that much of what was occurring involved, shall we say, conjugal relations. Activity was so frantic that enormous appetites were worked up at the expense of my poor hollyhocks. In despair I even pulled out the pyrethrum which in my garden is the equivalent of launching a thermo-nuclear missile. To no avail, wild shagging continued almost unabated.
Whilst it is somewhat disconcerting to discover one's garden has become the porn capital of the insect world, I began to think about the possibilities this situation could present. What if I was to harnass the aphrodisiachal qualities of the humble hollyhock? Judging by the staying power of the insects it would surpass Viagra thus making my horticultural fortune. Alas, my pharmeceutical know-how extends only as far as the idea of grinding the plant up and force-feeding it to the Frenchman which I suspect wouldn't pass even the most lax University Ethics Committee. So I'll leave it with you as a tantalising possibility, if you come up with a solution I'll be happy with a 5% finders fee and we'll call ourselves even.