Alphabetical Plant Listing

Tagetes (Marigold)

French Marigold, African Marigold, Aztec Marigold, American Marigold, Big Marigold, American Saffron, Signet Marigold, Slender leaf Marigold, Striped Mexican Marigold (Tagetes)


Blooming their heart out in summer and fall, Tagetes (Marigolds) is a genus of annuals and perennials with showy single or double flowers in shades of orange, yellow, red, gold, white, and any combination of those colors. The strongly aromatic fern-like foliage repels pests such as deer or rabbits, making Marigolds great companion plants to other plants. 

Marigolds belong to the aster family (Asteraceae), genus Tagetes, which includes about 50 species of Marigolds. However, only 3 species of annual Marigolds are widely cultivated worldwide.

Most Popular Annual Marigolds

  • Tagetes erecta (African Marigold, American Marigold, or Mexican Marigold): This is the tallest and most upright species of Marigold, towering up to 3-4 feet (90-120 cm). It boasts large, double and pompon-like flowers, up to 5 in. across (12 cm), in shades of yellow, orange, and creamy white. Tagetes erecta is commonly known as the African Marigold although it did not originate in Africa. It is called African Marigold because it was first imported to Europe through a trade route that passed through northwest Africa. These annual plants are native to Mexico and Central America. They are a good choice for hot, dry garden conditions where other Marigolds might struggle.
     
  • Tagetes patula( French Marigold): French Marigolds are compact and bushy annuals, typically 6-12 inches tall and wide (15-30 cm), with semi-double, double or crested flowers, up to 2 in. across (5 cm), in various combinations of reds, oranges, and yellows. Tagetes patula is commonly known as the French Marigold but it did not originate in France. It is native to Mexico. It is adaptable to poor soils, heat, humidity, and especially drought. French Marigolds are reported to provide the greatest protection against a wide range of nematodes and are used in companion planting for many vegetable crops.
     
  • Tagetes tenuifolia (Signet Marigold): Signet Marigolds are compact annuals, reaching 12 in. in height and spread (30 cm), with a profusion of single, richly colored, small flowers, 1 in. across (2.5 cm), which generously cover the finely divided lacy foliage. Native to Mexico as well as Central America, Colombia, and Peru, their flowers have a pleasant lemon scent and are edible. They can be used in salads or in teas.

Perennial Marigolds

  • Tagetes lucida (Mexican Tarragon): Mexican Tarragon is an upright perennial growing up to 30 in. tall (75 cm) with finely toothed, linear, deep green aromatic leaves. It grows all spring and summer and produces a lavish display of small, single, bright golden flowers from late summer to fall. Mexican tarragon is a great plant to attract butterflies, bees, and birds to the garden while repelling many insects. Easy to grow and drought tolerant, this plant is used both for its medicinal properties and as a cooking herb. The leaves are used to add flavor to soups, egg, and meat dishes. The flowers are used to make teas that treat the common cold, intestinal gas, and diarrhea. Mexican Tarragon is native to Mexico and Central America and performs best in hardiness zones 9-11.  
     
  • Tagetes lemmonii (Mexican Marigold) : Mexican Marigold is a sprawling evergreen shrub growing up to 4-6 ft. tall (120-180 cm) noted for its aromatic foliage and brightly colored flowers. In constant bloom during short-day seasons (fall, winter), with off blooms in other seasons, Mexican Marigold gets covered with bright golden daisy-like flowers adorned with darker yellow discs. Mexican Marigold is very aromatic, a simple brush past the plant will release its strong fragrance. The musky fragrance discourages deer, yet bees and butterflies are attracted to the flowers. Mexican Marigold is native to southern Arizona, and northern Mexico and performs best in hardiness zones 8-11.
     

Calendula officinalis (Pot Marigold, English Marigold): This native of southern Europe is not a true Marigold and should not be confused with the Mexican genus (Tagetes). Its brightly colored flowers are edible and possess wound-healing and local anti-inflammatory properties. Pot Marigold is however more commonly grown in the flower garden than as a culinary herb.

 

Marigold: Plant Care and Growing Guide

Learn how to plant, grow and care for Marigolds and add a bright pop of color all summer long.
Read More

Guide Information

Hardiness 2 - 11
Heat Zones 1 - 12
Climate Zones 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 1A, 1B, 2A, 2B, 3A, 3B, A1, A2, A3, H1, H2
Plant Type Annuals, Perennials
Plant Family Tagetes - Marigold
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 8" - 4' (20cm - 120cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Fragrant, Showy
Tolerance Clay Soil, Deer, Drought, Rabbit
Attracts Butterflies, Hummingbirds
Landscaping Ideas Beds and Borders, Edging, Patio and Containers
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Coastal Garden, Informal and Cottage

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While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.

Guide Information

Hardiness 2 - 11
Heat Zones 1 - 12
Climate Zones 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 1A, 1B, 2A, 2B, 3A, 3B, A1, A2, A3, H1, H2
Plant Type Annuals, Perennials
Plant Family Tagetes - Marigold
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 8" - 4' (20cm - 120cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Fragrant, Showy
Tolerance Clay Soil, Deer, Drought, Rabbit
Attracts Butterflies, Hummingbirds
Landscaping Ideas Beds and Borders, Edging, Patio and Containers
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Coastal Garden, Informal and Cottage
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