Collecting Marigold Seeds: Learn How To Harvest Marigold Seeds
Marigolds are perennial plants which grow from seed. They have many names such as marigold, dandelion, dahlias, daisies and others.
They come in different colors such as white, pink or red. The flowers are small but beautiful and they bloom in spring time. There are several varieties of marigolds. Some of them are edible while some are poisonous. You can collect marigold seeds which will produce new plants and flowers.
How to Harvest Marigold Seeds?
The best way to harvest marigold seeds is through the use of a hand rake or a mechanical harvester. If you want to save money then you can buy a commercial machine which does not require any maintenance at all. However, it costs a lot of money and you cannot expect to get the same results with it.
Before starting harvesting marigold seeds, make sure that there are no weeds around your garden area. Also make sure that you don’t have any other pests such as ants or spiders which could harm the seeds.
Once you’ve collected enough marigold seeds, place them into a plastic bag and seal it tightly. Then place the bag in a dark corner where nobody can reach it. Check on the seeds after three days and make sure that they are not rotting.
You can also dry the marigold seeds in the sun so that they can last longer. You need to have a sheet of paper or any fabric which can absorb the moisture for a few hours.
Spread it out on a table and place the marigold seeds in a single layer on it. Make sure that they do not touch each other because this could cause them to rot. Leave the seeds to dry under the sun for about 4-5 hours. During this time make sure that you turn them over every hour so that they dry evenly.
How to Know if Marigold Seeds Are Good?
You can tell if marigold seeds are good by making sure that they are mature. This can be done by looking at the outer covering of each seed. If it is dark and brittle, then it is most likely ready to be collected. You should also make sure that there are no signs of mold, rot or insects. If you wish, you can always plant them immediately to check if they are viable or not. But once again, make sure that each one has a dark and brittle outer covering before you plant them.
How to Plant Marigold Seeds?
You should plant marigold seeds at least 5-inches apart so that they have enough space to grow properly. You can either plant them in rows or you can also plant them in clusters. It all depends on what type of look you wish to achieve in your garden or backyard. For row planting, all you have to do is to dig a hole 5-inches deep and about 2-inches wide. Make sure that the top of the hole is sloping towards the center so that water can easily flow out of it. Place three marigold seeds inside the hole and cover it with soil. Water it thoroughly.
For a cluster planting, all you have to do is to put the seeds directly into the ground. Space them out in a circle and cover them with soil as well as water them.
They should start growing in a week or so depending upon the amount of sunlight and water they receive every day.
Trimming and Maintenance
You will have to trim the plants at least once in a month during their growing stages. Begin by removing the dead flowers or leaves that are already damaged or infected by pests.
Make sure that you don’t break or damage the healthy parts of the plant while doing so. Deadheading is an important process when it comes to growing marigolds because it prevents the spread of disease and pests. It also helps promote blooming which means more flowers for you!
If you wish to give your plants some support to grow upright, all you have to do is to place a stake at the bottom. But make sure that it is not too tight or it will prevent the roots from spreading out properly.
You can also fill in the area with soil and this will have the same effect of supporting the plant.
You will have to water your plants every day during the growing season but make sure that the soil doesn’t get waterlogged. Add some organic fertilizer to the soil about once every two weeks.
How to Harvest Marigold Flowers?
You can either pick the flowers yourself or you can have them delivered to you from a florist. The florist will be able to provide you with more options and variety but they might be slightly more expensive. You can also dry the flowers yourself to save money but it will require more time and effort on your part. Either way, you can use the flowers for a variety of different things such as:
You can use the flowers to create decorations or various types of craft projects. All you have to do is to remove the petals and place them in a bowl of water.
Soak them for about an hour and then arrange them however you want. After that, take a needle and thread and start hand sewing them together.
You can also dry the petals and then grind them into a fine powder. From there, you can use them to create a paint that will allow you to color various items such as wood, paper, plastic, etc.
You can also make a garland by tying the petals together or you can even weave them into place. The sky is the limit when it comes to the different types of crafts that you can create.
Marigold petals can be used to create various types of potpourri. All you have to do is place a few in a small bowl and then pour some hot water over them.
After they have soaked for at least a few hours, drain out the liquid and then place the petals in a small bag or jar. Add some drops of essential oils and then seal it shut. Allow it to set for a day or two so that the scent can infuse and then it is ready for use.
You can also create a potpourri ball by rolling the petals together into a ball and then coating it in wax. This is a great option if you plan on traveling a lot with the potpourri because the ball won’t spill or leak.
Marigold petals can also be used to make incense. You can either dry the petals first or you can leave them wet.
If you choose to dry them, all you have to do is layer them in a dish and allow them to set overnight. If you are going the wet route, you can place the petals inside of a paper bag and leave them there for about a week.
After this time has passed, grind up the petals into a fine dust. Add this to some glue that has been heated up and mix it together until it creates a thick paste.
After this has cooled down, you can add sand or nuts for texture and then roll it into Incense sticks.
You can also place this directly onto a burning board if you do not wish to make sticks. Allow about four to six petals per stick and place it in an area that gets a lot of foot traffic.
This will help repel insects naturally!
You can also use other herbs and flowers such as lavender, lemongrases, rose petals, etc. to create your own custom blends.
This is a great way to reuse and repurpose left over herbs from other projects.
Tips and Tricks
If you are using the flowers for crafts, you can also use the stems and even the roots of the flower if needed. For some types of crafts, you can even leave the roots intact so that the plant can be planted later on after creating your piece of art.
For the crafts that require drying, you can place them in the oven on a cooling setting (120 degrees) or you can leave them in the sun. If it is cold where you live, this may take a few days so you may need to rotate their position every few hours to ensure even drying.
If you are creating potpourri, you can also use various herbs and spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, etc.
-2 cups all purpose flower
-1/2 tsp salt
-1 tbs sugar
-2 tbs oil
-1 cup milk (warm)
-4 eggs, beaten
-2 tsp baking powder
-1 tsp vanilla
-1/4 cup melted butter
-1/2 cup dried cornflakes, crushed
-marigold petals (dried or fresh)
-Combine the flower, salt, sugar and baking powder.
-Stir in the oil, warm milk, eggs and vanilla. Beat until smooth.
-Slowly stir in the butter until the batter is creamy.
-Add more flower if needed to allow the mixture to fall off of a spoon.
-Stir in the crushed cornflakes and the marigold petals.
-Drop by spoonfuls into hot oil.
-Fry until golden brown.
-Drain on paper towels.
-Sprinkle with icing sugar before serving, if desired.
-1/2 cups butter
-1 tbs dried marigold petals
-1 tsp honey
-1 tsp lemon juice
-Combine all ingredients in a food process and process until the petals are chopped up very fine.
-Spoon into a crock and store in the refrigerator when not in use.
-1 tsp dried marigold petals
-2 cups water
-1 tbsp honey
-Bring water to a boil and remove from heat.
-Add petals and steep for 15 minutes.
-Strain liquid into a mug and add honey and a slice of lemon. Stir well until honey dissolves.
Spray for Moth Prevention
-2 cups water
-1 cup dried lavender buds
-Combine ingredients in a pan and simmer on low for 15 to 20 minutes.
-Strain liquid into a jar and allow to cool before placing in a dark, cool place.
-Use a cotton ball to apply the solution gently to wool clothing. Do not soak or bleach.
-Allow garment to dry completely before storing.
Lavender Bath Salts
-1 cup epsom salts
-1 cup sea salt
-1/4 cup dried lavender buds
-Combine ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
-Pour into individual storage containers for gifts or your own personal use.
-Use 1 tbsp per bath for a relaxing soak.
-Store in a cool, dry place when not in use.
-1 cup lavender buds
-1 tbsp dried and crushed rose petals (optional)
-1/2 cup flour
-6 inch square of muslin or cotton fabric (cut to desired size if necessary)
-Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
-Seal into a glass jar or other air tight container.
-Place in drawers or other areas where you would like to keep away moths.
-If scent fades, simply open container and leave open for a few hours to allow the scent to resurface.
You can use lavender buds alone in sachets or you can mix in a small amount of dried rose petals if desired. These also make great gifts when filled into small jars or ziplock bags before giving to friends and family.
-2 cups of warm water
-1 tbsp lavender buds
-2 tbsp liquid castile soap (try one of the scents listed above)
-Mix together in a squirt bottle.
-To use, wet hair first, spray liberally, rub into hair and scalp.
You can also add a few drops of lavender essential oil to this basic recipe to give it a bit more staying power. It will help to combat oily hair and is excellent for those with dandruff or itchy scalps.
You can also add a few drops to your hands before rubbing into your hair.
Use the same method as above for shampoo and for use in the bath too. Don’t soak in the water with the oils on your skin as they can make water slide off of them and create a film on top of the water which can be a hazard for slipping, especially for children.
You can also add 4-6 drops of lavender and other essential oils for their healing properties to 1 tbsp of liquid castile soap in a pump bottle for an all purpose bathroom and kitchen antibacterial spray.
Dried lavender buds can also be used in sachets to repel moths from your clothing. They are good for closets and drawers and can simply be made by stuffing a little muslin or cotton bag with the desired amount of lavender buds.
Lavender sachets also make great gifts when made into small bags or other attractive packaging.
Cats and other pets, such as rabbits, love to roll around in dried lavender and can be given small bags of it to enjoy. It is also a good idea to put some in your hamper or drawer with your delicates as it will keep moths away if they try to eat your clothing.
It is a very versatile herb and the uses are only limited by your imagination!
If you are looking for a more traditional type of lavender, please check out the post on How to Grow Lavender.
If you have any questions, concerns or comments, please don’t hesitate to leave them in the comment section below.
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Hills, Daniel. “The Curious Cookbook.” Chartwell Books, 2013.
Kokell, Patricia L. “The Aromatherapy Garden.” Storey Publishing, 1999.
Lighthawk, Mary. “Herbal Living.” Storey Publishing, 1998.
Lupton, Rosina. “The Herbal Farmacy.” Kyle Cathie Ltd., 2007.
Organicfacts.net “Lavender.” 2014.
Accessed December 21, 2014.
Rutledge, Susan. “The Herb Book.” Houghton Mifflin Company, 1997.
Spollen, Madeline. “Healing Herbs.” Sterling Publishing Company, 2010.
Staples, Suzanne. “Herbs, An Illustrated Dictionary.” Sterling Publishing Company, 2012.
Tierra, Leslie. “The Herbal Body Book.” Crossing Press, 2004.
Sources & references used in this article:
Carotenoid Composition of Marigold (Tagetes erecta) Flower Extract Used as Nutritional Supplement by WL Hadden, RH Watkins, LW Levy… – Journal of Agricultural …, 1999 – ACS Publications
Optimizing Marigold (Tagetes erecta L.) Petal and Pigment Yield by TL Bosma, JM Dole, NO Maness – Crop Science, 2003 – Wiley Online Library
A new species of Alternaria on seeds of French marigold. by WS Wu, HC Wu – Mycotaxon, 2005 – cabdirect.org
… gene in the common morning glory, Ipomoea purpurea, controls anthocyanin biosynthesis in flowers, proanthocyanidin and phytomelanin pigmentation in seeds, and seed … by KI Park, N Ishikawa, Y Morita, JD Choi… – The Plant …, 2007 – Wiley Online Library
Ergot alkaloid and chlorogenic acid content in different varieties of morning glory (Ipomoea spp.) seeds by M Friedman, L Dao, MR Gumbmann – Journal of agricultural and …, 1989 – ACS Publications
Effect of mother plant nutrition, plant density and seed maturity on seed yield and quality in marigold (Tagetes erecta L.) by CM Shivakumar – 2000 – krishikosh.egranth.ac.in