Orange flowers are the best flowers, so I’ve been growing marigolds for years. They did great in San Francisco, unlike my tall zinnias. They’re easy to start and these ones all have a lovely fragrance if you rub their leaves. Bees are big fans, too.
The picture of the marigolds getting a trim was taken April 15th. I had to hack them back a couple times to make sure they branch out. There they are all fluffy and big with their dahlia buddies on May 1st. I planted out the entire flat of marigolds between our garden and our Eagle Heights Community garden plot on May 9th. The weather looked like smooth sailing frost wise and I was getting sick of watering them twice a day when it hit 90 degrees in early May.
My marigold bounty from a couple weeks ago, and they’re still going strong. I’m kind of picky about what marigolds I like to grow. I really like the ones that get nearly three feet tall and have long stems. It’s a toss up for my favorite between ‘Burning Embers’ and ‘Harlequin’. I also gave ‘Frances’s Choice’ a shot this year for fun and love them.
There’s a soft spot in my heart for the cute little lemony scented signet marigolds. I wish I would have tried ‘Paprika’ but ‘Tangerine Gem’ is good, too. Shout out to Select Seeds for offering such a wonderful selection marigold options!
Here they are out front back in early June plus a cute little bouquet. My little bamboo and twine “fence” keeps stuff from flopping all over the sidewalk and is barely even visible now that everything is getting big.
Here’s a little look back on my marigolds in California over the years. The top left picture of ‘Harlequin’ craziness is from our Oakland garden back on October 30, 2013. Below that is more of it with some cornflowers in our SF garden August 1, 2016 while the one on the right was taken August 24, 2018 in SF.
I can’t post about marigolds without a picture of my all time favorite, the giant perennial, Tagetes lemmonii. It smelled delicious and was over eight feet tall in our SF border. Deadheading and pruning it was heaven. It was a good spot to set out pipevine swallowtail butterflies on, too. I should give it a try here in Wisconsin next year for fun, seems like it might do okay in a shady situation.