Pungent marigolds

julianna_il(z6 IL)February 4, 2007

For years, I've put marigolds in my gardens to repel bad bugs. This was something my grandmother always told me to do. But in reading about companion planting, it seems that you need the stinky ones. Last year I went to nearly every nursery in town, sniffing marigolds and none of them had a smell. I guess they've bred out the stink.

So, I guess I'm going to order heirloom marigold seeds from Heirloom seeds and wondering if anyone here knows which is smellier (and better for bugs): French or African?

I'm afraid to order seeds from any place that doesn't specialize in heirlooms because they may be odorless hybrids.

Thanks for any info you can give!

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zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin

The strongest-scented marigolds I have found were called "Lemon Drop", I believe (or lemon-something). They are dainty, mound-forming plants with tiny flowers & lacy foliage. They give off an incredibly strong scent when brushed against. I found them in my local nursery, so they should be widely available. There is a "Tangerine" version also.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2007 at 6:25PM
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bella_trix(z6b SE PA)

Hi Julianna,

You can order the old fashion marigolds directly from Seed Savers Exchange. They have several that are listed as "traditional scent" or being used against nematodes. I'm trying out Jolly Jester this year. Follow the link below. Scroll down to the middle of the page for the marigolds.

I read somewhere that French marigolds are supposed to be very effective and Mexican marigolds (T. minuta) even more so. Unfortunately, Mexican marigolds are said to have a bad effect on beans and cabbage, so I think I'll skip them.

Good luck,
Bellatrix

Here is a link that might be useful: Seed Savers Exchange Marigolds

    Bookmark   February 5, 2007 at 1:08PM
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runningriot(z4 MN)

Julianna,
I too haven't been able to find old-fashioned smelling marigolds at garden centers for years, and now start my own.

'Orange Boy' has good smell (orange French dwarf), so does 'Troubadour' (yellow French dwarf).
Susan

    Bookmark   February 5, 2007 at 8:24PM
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david837

i planted mexican mar. in my bush beans and they did just fine . and i think to get the full effect of the marigold you need to have it tilled into the soil after they die off , for protection (nematode)the coming growing season . i may be wrong but thats what my thought was. please correct me if i'm wrong

david e

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 4:07PM
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triple_b(BC 5b)

The African marigolds are the ones who have the chemical that repels nematodes, if they are a problem in your area. However they have to be there for a couple years first or something. Try the companion planting or the pest control forums perhaps?

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 10:42PM
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Zinia(z7NC)

Hi,
Park's Seed Co. in S.C. has Golden Guardian Marigolds advertized to rid you of nematodes. I am going to try them this year. Their website will explain more.
zinia

    Bookmark   May 7, 2007 at 11:56PM
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