Marigold is an annual plant and herbaceous plant that adds beauty to the garden. There are two genus’s namely Tagetes and Calendula in which Tagetes belongs to African Marigolds and French Marigolds, and Calendula belongs to Pot Marigolds. Marigolds are available in different colors but yellow and orange are the most common among them. They have a strong and pungent smell and play a vital role in cosmetic treatment. There are many varieties in Marigold and the main varieties among them are listed below:
- African Marigolds (Tagetes erecta): These are also known as American Marigolds. These marigolds are erect-growing plants up to a height of three feet. These flowers are in the form of the globe and are large in size i.e., across 5 inches and are well known as good bedding plants. The color of the flowers vary from yellow to orange.
- French Marigolds (Tagetes patula): These Marigold flowers grow from a height of 5 inches to 18 inches and are smaller in size i.e., across two inches. The color of the flowers is red, orange and yellow. Bicolor patterns of red and orange color are also found in this type. These flowers are well known for edging flower beds and in mass plantings. They are also used in containers and window boxes.
- Signet Marigolds (T.Signata pumila): These Marigolds produce dense plants with finely divided leaves and bunches of small single flowers. The color of flowers varies from yellow to orange and they have a spicy tarragon flavor. The leaves of the plant have a pleasant lemon fragrance. These plants are well known for edging beds and also used in window boxes.
- Mule Marigolds: These marigolds are the hybrid variety of tall African and dwarf French marigolds and hence known as Mule Marigolds. These flowers can be grown at a height of 12 to 18 inches. Though their parenting is of combined qualities, their rate of germination is low.
Benefits of Marigold:
- Marigold(Calendula) is an excellent medicine to cure many skin problems and skin inflammations in the form of an injection or physical damage such as crural ulceration, varicose veins, haemorrhoids, anal fissures, mastitis, sebaceous cysts, impetigo or other inflamed cutaneous lesions.
- Marigold(Calendula) as an ointment works wonders in cosmetic treatment. It repairs minor damage to the skin such as subdermal broken capillaries and sunburn. The fluid from the stem is mainly used to remove warts, corns and calluses.
- Staring at the Marigold plant would improve the eyesight and lighten the mood.
- Bright yellow and orange Marigold flowers in South Asia are used in decorating religious statues, buildings, weddings and other ceremonies. They are also used as offerings at funerals.
- Pigments in Marigolds are extracted and used as a food colouring.
Plantation and Growth of Marigolds:
The process involves the following steps while planting:
- The initial procedure is to plant the seeds of Marigold and it takes about 45 days to flower after seeding.
- While seeding there should be a gap of 2cms and then cover the seeds with 1/4 inch of potting soil.
- Water sufficiently to the seeds.
- After that Plants will appear within a few days.
- When true leaves are grown then transform it into individual containers or outdoors. Marigolds are thick and strong plants that add beauty to the garden. These can be grown easily by following the below steps:
- Half-sunny or sunny locations are suitable to plant the seeds.
- Well-drained, moist and fertile soil must be needed.
- To prolong the flowering period, add potash fertilizers to it.
- If the flower is about to open, pinch off the first flower which leads to a larger number of flowers.
Marigolds have a strong pungent smell that keeps insects at bay but they are bothered by some insects called slugs. Also, provide boundaries to protect the tall American and Triploid Marigold varieties from strong winds and heavy rainfall.