The florets of Tagetes erecta are rich in the orange-yellow carotenoid lutein and are used as a food colour (INS number E161b) in the European Union for foods such as pasta, vegetable oil, margarine, mayonnaise, salad dressing, baked goods, confectionery, dairy products, ice cream, yogurt, citrus juice and mustard. In the United States, however, the powders and extracts are only approved as colorants in poultry feed.


When planted as a cover crop, several cultivars of marigolds have been found to suppress root-knot nematodes. French marigold cultivars ‘Tangerine’ and ‘Single Gold’ (Tagetes patula ‘Tangerine’, and Tagetes patula ‘Single Gold’) have shown resistance to several root-knot nematode species. Intercropping marigolds for nematode control has not been found to be effective in protecting nearby plants and is not recommended. For more information on root knot nematode control, please see HGIC 2216, Root Knot Nematode Control in the Vegetable Garden.It was well known as a garden-flower and for use in both cookery and medicine. The petals, with their slight aromatic bitterness are used in fish and meat soups, rice dishes, salads, and as a colouring for cheese and butter. The whole flower was used as a garnish in medieval times. An infusion of the petals can be used as a rinse to lighten and brighten hair. The petals also make a nourishing cream for the skin. Pot marigold makes an attractive cut flower and can be grown in the vegetable garden to help with insect control. The plant yields oil that may be used in perfumery.

A soil test can be used to confirm the potential of a leafy transplanted crop to repel nematodes. For more on soil testing andAnnuals April beneficial insects Blog Blogs Bulbs Control cottage food law COVID-19 December Deciduous Diseases Evergreen Fall February Fertilizing food law hot topic Insects IPM Irrigation January June March May Mixed screens Native natural enemies November Perennials Planting poison ivy poison oak Pollinator garden Propagation Pruning Rain garden Recipe Semi-evergreen September Shrub maintenance Spanish Tree maintenance Vegetables WeedsMarigolds have a long tradition as plants that repel damaging insects when planted near vulnerable vegetables. This seems to be a dubious claim, as there are no academic studies that verify the plant's ability to repel insects—with one exception. There is some evidence that marigolds emit a soil chemical through the roots that can help control damaging nematodes. On the other hand, the powerful smell of marigolds does seem to be repugnant to deer and rabbits. (Source: www.thespruce.com)



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