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  HOME AND GARDEN » Annuals

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Marigold

marigolds.jpg (16759 bytes)Brightly colored marigolds are easy to grow and are incredibly versatile in the garden. Choose dwarf French types to plant as edgings or use taller selections as feature flowers in mixed flowerbeds. Because plant size and habit varies with selections, it is important to check the plant tags to see if the variety grows to 10 inches or 2 feet. Marigolds will grow in many different soils. Plenty of sun is needed to help them flower well. Plant marigolds in early spring. If you keep them watered and snip off the old blooms as they fade, plants will continue flowering until the first hard freeze.

Care

Most marigolds grow lazy and would like to stop blooming for a few weeks after transplanting. Proper fertilization helps them grow and resume flowering quickly. Just before planting marigolds in cultivated soil, mix in a plant food containing timed-release fertilizer and extra phosphorous, such as 11-40-6. The extra phosphorous will help the plants develop extensive roots.

Marigolds sometimes take a short break from blooming in the heat of summer. They will come back strong in the fall if you fertilize in mid-summer with the same fertilizer used in spring. Sprinkle the fertilizer onto the soil between the plants and water well. Do not switch to a high nitrogen fertilizer because too much nitrogen makes marigolds big and leafy with only a few blooms. When growing marigolds in containers, fertilize them monthly by sprinkling a teaspoon of fertilizer per plant atop the soil in the pots and watering well.   Also, pinch off faded blooms before they have a chance to form seeds. This will help plants stay fresh and continue blooming.

 

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