Golden marigold – characteristics, cultivation and use

golden marigold
golden marigold - by Goku122

The golden marigold (Tagetes tenuifolia) has experienced a strong increase in sympathy in recent years: Probably because of its natural appearance, which is currently very much in vogue, or also because of its fragrance, which this marigold is very positively acknowledged by the gardener. Quite different from the student flowers, the marigold hybrids, which are sometimes referred to as “stinker flowers”.

Profile of golden marigold:

Scientific name: Tagetes tenuifolia

Plant family: daisy family (Asteraceae)

Other names: signet marigold

Sowing time / Planting time: Pre-culture from February – March / Mid-April to mid-May in bed

Flowering period: June – October

Harvest time: June – October

Useful plant parts: leaves, flowers, buds

Location: sunny to partially shaded

Soil quality: sandy to loamy, moderately dry to moderately moist, nutrient-rich

These information are for temperate climate!

Use as a medicinal herb: mood elevator

Use as aromatic herb: jams, desserts, drinks, dessert sauces, fruit salads, baking

Plant characteristics and classification of golden marigold

Origin and occurrence of golden marigold

Golden marigold originally comes from South America. The species has been in culture since at least 1795.

Plant order of golden marigold

All marigold belong to the daisy family and are at home in the hot and dry areas of Central America. But now they are real cosmopolitan. The golden marigold is also available as a narrow-leaved french marigold.

Characteristics of the golden marigold


Depending on the variety, the annual golden marigold is between 20 and 70 cm (8 and 28 in) high. The plant grows hemispheric, upright and bushy.


Filigree slotted and about 10 cm (4 in) long are the leaves of golden marigold, with which one can refine salads and also tastes good as a tea addition. Visually, it is reminiscent of the fronds of ferns. The leaves are usually opposite, pinnate and toothed.


The simple, terminal and axillary flowers with the five ligulate flowers are small compared to other marigold species, on average they are only 2.5 cm (1 in) tall. In the middle there is a multitude of ligulate flowers. The flower abundance of golden marigold is remarkable. The bloom lasts well into autumn. Wild species blooms yellow-orange, cultivars in various shades of yellow, orange and red.

Golden marigold – cultivation and care


A place in the sun is the prerequisite for good growth, in partial shade the abundance of flowers leaves something to be desired. Dryness, on the other hand, is put away extremely well. Unlike other summer flowers, golden marigold can handle moisture quite well.


Good drainage and a slightly acidic, nutrient-rich soil allow golden marigold to thrive.


Golden marigold can be easily grown from seed, and sown from February / March in preculture under glass. The seeds are only lightly pressed on and not covered with soil. It takes up to 14 days at a little below 20 °C / 68 °F for the first green shoots to appear. Please keep the seedlings sunny and do not keep them too moist. It is then pricked out into a nutritious potting soil, because all marigolds have a high nutritional requirement. Be sure to protect the seedlings from night frost: damage can occur even above zero degree level. Before planting outside, you should harden the plants. By the way: From mid-April to mid-May, you can sow directly in the bed.


You can buy golden marigold plants in clumps in garden centers. After the ice saints, the plants can go outdoors. Do not plant them too tightly, because golden marigold likes to spread: a distance of 25 cm (10 in) has proven itself.


If the precipitation-free period lasts too long, you should always water.


Every two weeks, the nutritional needs are met with liquid flowering plant fertilizer.


If you regularly cutting out, you can look forward to a lush second flowering. Where the plant grows too wide, the shoots are simply cut back.


If you want to harvest seeds, you take off the ripe seed pods from early autumn, remove and dry the elongated black seeds and keep them dark and dry until the next year. To separate the seeds and pods from the seeds, it is best to put the seed pods in a bag, seal it and shake everything vigorously once.

Diseases and pests

Golden marigold, like all tagetes, is often used as a barrier for snails, but often falls completely victim to the annoying slime animals. Aphids are also common in the garden.


If the night temperatures permanently fall below 5 ° C / 41 ° F), the plant belongs in the house. Place indoors in a cool room at 15 to 18 ° C / 59 to 64 ° F near a bright window (if possible on the south side) and keep it moderately moist.

Use of the golden marigold

Golden marigold in the kitchen

You can use the flowers, buds and young leaves. Freshly in jams, desserts, drinks, dessert sauces, fruit salads and of course for baking, wherever you would use orange or lemon peel. Dried it can be used for tea blends.

The leaves and edible flowers can be used like herbs fresh or dried as a pretty decoration and also eat. They have a special mandarin aroma. They go well with all desserts, soups, risotto, potato dishes or sauces, in jams, drinks, dessert sauces, fruit salads and of course for baking, wherever you would use orange or lemon peel.

Golden marigold as a medicinal herb

The flowers of the medicinal plant contain the substance lutein, which belongs to the carotenoids and to protect against age-related macular degeneration (AMD), an eye disease. The essential oil obtained from the flowers is also said to have a mood-lifting effect.

Golden marigold can be used for these ailments and diseases

  • age-related macular degeneration (AMD)

Medicinal properties

  • mood elevator

Side effects

Not known.


Ask your doctor or pharmacist. Visiting this page can not replace the visit to the doctor. For serious or unclear complaints, consult your doctor.

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