Marigolds, pest control.

I was browsing other gardening sites, and found mastermachine, which has an interesting post on the way marigolds can repel pests in the garden.

3 years old.

I thought, since I’ve put the the lavender to one side for now, I’d take a look at another beloved plant to me. The marigold.

Now I have no proof on this, as there are other factors to plant health, such as PH balance and soil quality. Famers rotate plants to keep soil rich in nutrients, which is well known but I did have a good year for my lupins a few years ago with lupins mixed with marigolds. As the marigolds have retreated to the borders of the bed in the front garden, the lupins have spread out a little, but then so has the sage. I’ll report back in a month on the progress of the lupins, as this blog is for marigold lovers, or converts.

Occasionally, I give in and use slug pellets, with the lupins, at least that’s how I’m framing it, but really I’ve discovered my partner, who has a passion for lupins, has been throwing slug pellets on them. I was a bit annoyed because of my habit of not wearing gardening gloves, and not wanting to expose birds or myself to the stuff. Still relationships are about compromise. I’m, now, I suppose, 90% pesticide free.

Picked from the garden yesterday.

There are many different varieties of marigold, just as there is French lavender, there are French marigolds. I haven’t grown French lavender for several years now, but thinking about marigolds has reminded me of how interesting French lavender is. I particularly like the bluish tinge to the foliage.

The marigolds I have were grown (not French Marigolds – I have added this as extra to clarify that I am not suggesting they are the French variety), from seed given to me by my dad a month before his death in May 2017. Every year I harvest the seeds. These can be harvested as soon as they dry on the plant. They are large curly seeds. One of my favourite seeds, maybe because of the association with childhood.


Did you know?

Marigolds are known as “rich man’s flower”, unlike carnations, “Poor man’s flowers”.

Marigold flowers can be eaten. Add them to salads, for colour.

Marigolds can be used as cut flowers. Bring them in before the rain.

Try planting marigolds near your pond, to ward off mosquitoes.

Marigolds need water. They thrive on buckets of it.

The seeds dry on the plant, and hang down ready dried, not in seed pods like many plants such as poppies. Post the dried seeds to a friend.

Marigolds on the edge of a border.


  1. The marigold you are writing about is “pot marigold” or more correctly calendula, which I love, but have no pest repellent qualities. They are edible, lovely and reliable. Most Americans only know French or African marigolds, whose odor DO have pest repellent characteristics, but are NOT edible except the special little tagetes tenufolia “Lemon Gem” and “Tangerine Gem.” Interesting how “marigold” can mean two very different plants!

    Liked by 1 person

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