Growing Guide
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French Marigold

Annual Flower

Tagetes patula
Asteraceae Family

Shorter and not as upright as African Marigolds, French Marigolds form mounds that are often wider than they are tall. These aromatic annuals are easy to grow and brighten the garden with their cheerful shades of yellow, orange and red.

Site Characteristics
  • full sun

Soil conditions:

  • requires well-drained soil

Special locations:

  • outdoor containers
Plant Traits

Lifecycle: annual

Ease-of-care: easy

Height: 0.5 to 1.25 feet

Spread: 0.5 to 1.25 feet

Bloom time:

  • early summer
  • mid-summer
  • late summer
  • early fall
  • mid-fall

Flower color:

  • red
  • orange
  • yellow

Depends on variety. Wide range of orange and yellow shades, often marked with dark red, maroon, and rust.

Foliage color:

  • medium green
  • dark green
  • other

Leaves are sometimes tinged with bronze.

Foliage texture: fine

Leaves are fernlike.


  • cushion, mound or clump
  • spreading mass

Some varieties are wider than tall.

Shape in flower: same as above

Special Considerations
  • frost
Special characteristics:
  • deer resistant
  • non-aggressive
  • non-invasive
  • native to North America - Mexico
  • fragrant - Some find the spicy scent pleasing, others find it unpleasant.
  • butterflies
  • hummingbirds
Special uses:
  • cut flowers
  • edible landscaping
  • direct-seeding
Growing Information
How to plant:

Propagate by seed - Scatter seeds outdoors where desired after frost danger has passed, or start indoors 4 to 6 weeks before the last frost.

Germination temperature: 70 F to 75 F

Days to emergence: 7 to 14

Maintenance and care:
Deadhead to prolong flowering. Pinch to keep bushy. Water when not flowering in hot weather.

More growing information: How to Grow Annuals

Japanese Beetle
Red spider mites
Parasitic nematodes
Rarely troubled by diseases.
‘Little Hero’ Series: 7” tall plants with large, double carnation flowers in 7 color combinations of maroon, orange and yellow.

‘Hero’ Series: 10” tall plants with double carnation, large (2” wide) flowers in 7 different combinations of yellow, orange and maroon.

‘Bonanza’ Series: 2” wide, double carnation flowers in 5 different combinations of yellow, orange and maroon on bushy, compact 8” tall plants.

‘Aurora Series’: 1’ tall plants with wide-petalled, anemone like flowers in shades of maroon, yellow, and orange.

‘Janie’ Series: Early blooming. 8” tall plants are perfect for container growing. Double carnation type flowers in 6 different combinations of yellow, orange and maroon.

‘Discovery’ F-1 hybrids: 10” tall plants with dense, double yellow or orange flowers.

‘Boy O’ Boy’ Series: 6” tall prolifically flowering plants with flowers in shades of maroon, yellow, and orange

‘Queen’ Series: 10” to 1’ tall plants with camellia like flowers in shades of yellow, orange and maroon.