Marigolds are a favourite in many gardens, bringing an abundance of colour to vegetable beds and flower beds alike. Learning how to save Marigold seeds for next years garden could not be easier….
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Harvesting and saving marigold seeds is a quick and easy process. Simply Follow my directions and Video below for a successful harvest.
Note- If your Marigolds are a hybrid variety, the seeds you collect may not produce plants that resemble the parent plant. Instead, you may find the flowers produced, revert to one of the Original plants used in the production of the Hybrid….I wouldn’t necessarily consider that a bad thing! I quite like the idea of a Pot luck Marigold-You never know what your going to get!
When to Harvest Marigold Seeds
The best time to Harvest Marigold seeds is when the flowers have died back and the base of the flower (Seed Pod) is beginning to brown. *It is perfectly okay to begin the seed harvest, even when the seed pod has some green on it.
What do Marigold Seeds Look Like?
Marigold seeds remind me of Hedgehog Spines, though definitely not as sharp! They are slight, pointy, black and white slivers. *Technically these slivers are the fruit of the Marigold and are called Achenes. The Marigold seed, is within these slivers (we don’t separate the seed from the sliver, when growing Marigolds we plant the Sliver as a whole) They are ready to be harvested when one end of the sliver is dark and the other light. * If you begin to harvest the slivers and they are a solid light colour-they are not ready.
How To Harvest Marigold Seeds
1.Access the seed Head
Lay some brown paper down. Hold the base of each bloom and and gently pull away the spent petals, you will see a mass of long rod like, black and white slivers, these are the seeds. Spread them out on the brown Paper. See the video Below…
2. Let the Marigold Seeds Dry Out
Place the seeds in a dark, dry sheltered environment for around 1 week, to dry completely. This is an important step in order to prevent any mould developing on the seeds
3. How To Store Marigold Seeds
Store marigold seeds by placing them in a Jar or envelope out of direct sunlight in a cool dark Cupboard. * I would never recommend storing seeds in a plastic bag due to the risk of retaining residual moisture, which can cause the seeds to go bad.
4. Seed Viability
When it comes time to sow your Marigold seeds the following year. You can check the viability of your seeds in 2 ways…
- Make sure the seeds are still bone dry. If the seed has encountered any dampness, it is probably not a good candidate for a successful germination. How to test this? The Snap test-If your seeds bend and break, they are fine. If they don’t break, and remain flexible, they have likely encountered some moisture during storage and may not germinate
- Sink or Swim-You can also test the viability of Marigold seeds by placing a few in water. If they sink, they are fine, if they float, throw them out
Reasons To Grow Marigolds
- Marigolds are gorgeous, bright and showy annuals, perfect for borders, pots and vegetable gardens. They range in colour, from yellows, oranges, reds and even pink!
- All marigolds are excellent for attracting pollinators
- Marigolds attract beneficial insects such as ladybirds and parasitic wasps which prey on harmful garden insects that would seek to destroy valuable vegetable crops
- Marigolds can help eliminate nematodes, due to the toxins found within the plant.
- They are a low maintenance plant and fast-growing! Providing your garden with bright and beautiful, continuous colour until Autumn.
Here are some Marigold Varieties I Recommend
Marigold- TAGETES PATULA Nana Double
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