How to Grow Marigolds – Is marigold flower easy to grow?

How to Grow Marigolds – Is marigold flower easy to grow?

Marigolds are a great choice for their beauty, long blooming summers and easy care. Even beginners can grow marigolds and feel like they have the Midas touch. Marigolds are easy to care for as they thrive in any environment that has sun and good drainage. Because of their reputation for repelling insect pests and parasitics nematodes, they are often planted alongside vegetables. However, the University of Florida states that “simply planting them alongside other crops has not been shown” to decrease nematode numbers.

Low-growing, French marigolds are the best for vegetable gardens. They will not shade your plants. The gem variety can also be grown as microgreens. Marigold companion crops include squash, potato, and eggplant.

These bright, easy to care flowers can be grown by gardeners of all levels in pots, window boxes or flower beds. They bring joy and a lot of pleasure. Let’s get into marigold plant care.

Marigold Characteristics

A garden can be brightened by marigold flowers. African cultivars can grow up to 5 inches, while French flowers are usually less than 2 inches. These single and double flowers resemble many other flowers such as anemones, carnations, or mums. The natural colors of marigold are yellows and oranges. However, whites have been used for African cultivars. Browns were added for French varieties.

Do all marigolds repel mosquitoes?

Do all marigolds repel mosquitoes?

Marigolds can grow up to 6 inches tall. Ferny marigold leaves have an repellent scent. Some gardeners find it pleasantly spicy while others prefer the stinky. It is not obvious unless the leaves are crushed. However, it can deter insects, deer and rabbits from your garden.

While most marigolds can be grown year-round, some may be considered perennials in USDA zones 8 through 11. They can have misleading names as most of them originated in Mexico or Central America, not in France or Africa.

Recommendations for Marigold Varieties

  • Tagetes: The African marigold plant tends to reach 4 feet in height and produces large blooms, sometimes double, up to 5 inches wide.
  • Tagetesfilifolia: This 6-inch-tall marigold, also known as Irish Lace, is grown for its finely-cut foliage and minuscule white flowers.
  • Tagetes Lemmonii: The Mexican marigold shrub can grow up to 6 feet tall and is hardy to Zone 8. It blooms in autumn and winter with 2-inch-long yellow flowers. The species name comes from the couple that discovered it, rather than its citrusy scent.
  • Tagetes Lucida: This 2-foot herb is known as Mexican tarragon because of its anise-like smell. It bears strange two- or three-petal golden flowers and can sometimes be used to flavor Mexican hot cocoa.
  • Tags minuta: This herb marigold grows to 6 feet tall and bears inconspicuous white flowers. It is said to be the most effective species for repelling insects.
  • This French marigold can grow up to 6 inches high, and even reach up to 1 1/2 feet in height. It has blooms that measure 2 inches.
  • Tagetes tenuifolia: This signet marigold is often raised for its citrus-scented edible leaves. It grows up to 8 inches tall and produces only one or two yellow or orange flowers.
    Planting Marigolds
  • Marigolds should be accustomed to outdoor conditions slowly if you are starting marigolds indoors.

After the last frost date of spring, marigolds can be either transferred or planted. You may prefer to plant the first indoors, while the second outdoors. The longer maturing time of taller African cultivars is 70 to 90 days, compared to the 60 days for French varieties.

Do marigolds grow better in pots or in the ground?

Marigold care is simple because you can put marigold plants anywhere with full sun and well draining soil.  Marigolds can tolerate shade up to a fifth of the time. They prefer soil that has a pH between 6 and 7. Avoid soggy or shady garden beds and don’t overcrowd them. Cold, wet, and insufficient air movement can all contribute to fungus disease and rotting flowers.

How to plant marigolds?

How to plant marigolds?

Water them first, regardless of whether you’re transferring marigold seedlings to your garden or easing them from their containers. These are some tips to help you plant marigolds.

  • To encourage African marigolds to root, cut the lower leaves about 1 to 3 inches from the stem.
  • Place a French marigold in the same place it grew previously.
  • Place African marigolds one foot apart and French marigolds eight inches apart. Their soil should be kept lightly moist until they become established.

Marigolds can be grown in containers.

Yes, small marigold plants, such as the signet or French type , can thrive in pots, and window boxes. They may flower for most of the summer, and early fall. Taller varieties will prove more difficult, but one African cultivar can be the main attraction in a large pot. It should be surrounded by small filler plants and trailing spiller plant. Because marigold plants can’t tolerate wet soil, containers must have drainage holes and a fast-draining soil.

Watering Marigolds – Do marigolds need a lot of water?

The average water requirement for marigolds is 12 inch per week, which is the same amount recommended for vegetables. You may need to water your plants more if the climate is dry. However, it is best not to soak their leaves. Saturated foliage can cause severe damage to larger African cultivars. Overwatering and overly damp conditions–especially when accompanied by cool weather–also may bring on fungal diseases in marigolds.

Marigolds grown in containers dry out quicker and need more water than plants in the ground. They also require more frequent watering, sometimes as much as twice daily.

Fertilizing Marigolds

High nitrogen levels can cause marigold flowers to become too leafy. It is best to fertilize marigolds in-ground once and work the fertilizer into ground before planting them.

You should feed your plants more frequently with water-soluble fertilizers, as nutrients can quickly leach from containers. Follow the label’s directions. To encourage heavy flowering, you can use a bloom-booster fertilizer or plant food that is higher in its middle (phosphorous)

Pruning Marigolds

To encourage marigolds to grow, pinch them back when they’re young. This can be done by removing the tips and the two first leaves below each shoot.

To keep marigolds blooming throughout the summer, pinch or wither flowers at least once per week. As with all annuals, they can deteriorate and stop blooming once they are gone to seed.

Propagating Marigolds

You can either sow marigold seeds indoors in seed starter mix 4 to 6 weeks prior to your last frost date, or you can plant them outdoors once the soil has warmed up to 65 degrees Fahrenheit. You can cover them with 1/4 inch of soil or seed starting mix and let them grow at 70 to 75° until they sprout. This usually takes between 4 and 7 days. Avoid hybrids that were saved as marigold seeds. They won’t work because they aren’t identical to the parent plants strong>

Marigold Safety Considerations – Are marigolds toxic to dogs?

Are marigolds toxic to dogs?

ASPCA declares marigolds safe for dogs and cats. Some marigolds can also be used as edible greens or herbs, so they should not be toxic to humans. The North Carolina State Extension warns, however, that marigolds can cause serious health problems if consumed in large quantities. The sap of the plant can irritate sensitive skin. Gardeners with sensitive skin need to wear gloves when pruning or pinching plants. Also, it is best not to eat these edible flowers.

Allelopathic properties are a way Marigolds might be able to poison the ground and suppress the growth of other plants like beans.

Marigold Potential Diseases and Pests

Marigolds may be repellent to some pests but they are still attractive to slugs which will chew holes into their leaves at night. You can get rid of them by purchasing a slug bait made of iron phosphate and scattering its pellets around the plants at a rate of approximately 1 teaspoon per square meter.

Your marigolds might get botrytis if they are exposed to cold, wet conditions for long periods. This causes gray mold on the plants’ dying blooms. Apply a fungicide to the affected marigolds in the morning.

Winter Marigold Preparation – How do you take care of marigolds in the winter?

Marigold seedlings are able to tolerate indoor conditions for a time, but mature plants don’t do as well in the house. You should let them go at end of growing season, when frosty weather sets. You can sow their seeds the next spring if you save the seeds from the best open-pollinated species. Tagetes lemmonii is the most resilient species. It blooms best in winter.