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Thread: Types of Tagetes

  1. #1
    veggiechicken's Avatar
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    Default Types of Tagetes

    I've been sorting my Tagetes seeds and learnt something I thought I'd share!

    Tagetes are Marigolds (not the English Calendula marigolds) but the African and French ones commonly found in summer bedding. Despite their names they originate in Mexico (nothing is simple).

    Tagetes erecta are African marigolds, the tall ones - up to 3'.

    Tagetes patula are French marigolds. Some are dwarf (8") but can be 2' high. "Patula" means "spreading".

    African and French marigolds were all that I knew. Of course, there are more types, including:-

    Tagetes lucida aka "Sweet Mace" with sweet scented flowers. Is sold as a tarragon substitute.

    Tagetes minuta = Mexican marigold.aka Huacatay/ Mexican black mint. More at https://www.growfruitandveg.co.uk/gr...ion_99289.html

    Tagetes tenuifolia = Striped Mexican marigold and Signet marigold. "Tenuifolia" means "slender leaved".

    By chance I have seeds of all of these types but they have been low on my sowing list - especially the African ones which seem to stiff and formal for my random garden. They're also Half Hardy annuals and they're always overlooked! Having sorted out these seeds now, I feel duty bound to sow them in 2020 - "give seeds a chance".

    Does anyone have any growing advice or favourites, please?
    Last edited by veggiechicken; 20-10-2019 at 10:50 PM.
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    Bren In Pots's Avatar
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    Just checked my seed packet mine are, 'Marigold (French) Tiger Eyes' I sow them the same time as my toms planting them in the GH border any spares go in the garden amongst my veg.

    One year I grew mixed Marigolds and some grew nearly to the GH roof

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    Thelma Sanders is offline Gardening Guru
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    The only ones I grow are the single varieties of Tagetes patula, like Dainty Marietta and her sisters Red, Disco and of course there's always the Naughty one
    They keep the whitefly out of the greenhouse and look cheerful Seeds are cheap but they often self seed in the greenhouse warmth.

    A Chinese family took on a weedy plot earlier this year and they planted half of it with tall Marigolds, they look lovely (like African types) but they said the marigolds would kill the couch grass roots. I was dubious, but I'm keeping an eye on it...

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    veggiechicken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thelma Sanders View Post

    A Chinese family took on a weedy plot earlier this year and they planted half of it with tall Marigolds, they look lovely (like African types) but they said the marigolds would kill the couch grass roots. I was dubious, but I'm keeping an eye on it...
    I found many references to the power of Tagetes roots to control couch grass - and for the scent to repel whitefly. Sounds like a must-grow plant for everyone!
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    I don't like the smell of tagetes but I do love African marigolds, I can't remember the variety, I save the seed and leave them in envelopes. If they get rid of couch grass then even better, I will have to fill my plot with them
    veggiechicken likes this.

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    Tagetes tenuifolia 'Lemon Gem'...masses of yellow flowers all summer long on small plants, does really well in small pots, foliage smells like lemon, attracted loads of hoverflies, ladybirds and parasitic wasps into the greenhouse. There are red and orange varieties too, I think.

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    bikermike is offline Cropper
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thelma Sanders View Post
    The only ones I grow are the single varieties of Tagetes patula, like Dainty Marietta and her sisters Red, Disco and of course there's always the Naughty one
    They keep the whitefly out of the greenhouse and look cheerful Seeds are cheap but they often self seed in the greenhouse warmth.

    A Chinese family took on a weedy plot earlier this year and they planted half of it with tall Marigolds, they look lovely (like African types) but they said the marigolds would kill the couch grass roots. I was dubious, but I'm keeping an eye on it...
    Good lord! really? please keep me posted. Also, I'm told that Marestail is used in Chinese traditional medicine, so if they ever want any, I'm happy to trade... ;-)

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    I have marigolds (orange and yellow ones). No idea what sort as I planted the seeds years ago and now they self seed every year to the extent that I pull hundreds up. I just like the bright cheerful colours. If they can help in the fight against couch grass I'm tempted to put them all around the edges of the allotment. I wish they would control bindweed too!
    Snoop Puss likes this.

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