Marigolds are excellent flowers to grow in your landscape. Either they are on hanging baskets, planters, borders, or ornamental beds. Also, they are a great addition to your vegetable garden, although many gardeners do not favor adding flowers to their vegetable garden. The advantage that marigolds offers will boost the productivity and health of your vegetable garden. Besides, it will help to increase the diversity of plants, increase resilience, keep your garden growing strong, and protect the soil, among many other benefits. Below are the reasons why you should grow marigolds in your vegetable garden.
They are easy to grow
Firstly, marigolds are easy to grow that is why they are a popular choice for many gardeners. They grow in a wide range of soil types. However, they require a lot of sunlight. So as you plant them, they must be in full sun if you want trouble-free plants. Gardener’s Path has a great guide on starting and growing marigolds. Consider the method that favors you and enjoy the benefit of having the marigolds in your vegetable garden.
They attract bees and other pollinators
Through marigolds attracting bees and other pollinators, it acts as a great companion plant. Thus, it is best to add it to your vegetable garden. Since marigolds bloom for a long period. These blooms are an excellent resource for various pollinators during the growing season. When you add marigold to your garden, they help to draw these pollinators into your garden. To encourage all the many pollinators in your area, choose many different flowers, including the marigold for your garden.
They are edible plants
Among the plenty types of edible flowers, marigolds are part of them. So adding them to your fruits and vegetables is like adding another edible plant. They are not only good companion plants, but they are an edible plant in their own right. You can add the marigold petals to various types of salads. Also, you can use them as decoration to baked goods, such as cupcakes. Plus, a whole host of various ways in your kitchen. Add them to your diet and get the benefits that they have to offer your body.
They attract predatory insects
In addition to drawing in pollinators to your vegetable garden, they also draw in predatory insects that are useful in pest control. They help bring in lacewings, ladybugs, hoverflies, among other predatory insects that eat aphids, among other pests that damage your crops. So, adding marigolds to your garden is essential to keep the ecosystem in the balance as they attract beneficial insects. In this way, it makes it less likely that any pest problems will get out of control.
To make natural fabric dye
Did you know that you can use marigolds to make a natural fabric dye? Since the marigold flower petals have intense pigment, you can use it to make dyes for fabrics. Such as cotton, silk, wool, and hemp, among others. This is because they will not stick as successfully to synthetic fabrics. Thus, the vibrant yellow tones that you get from marigolds are common in natural dyeing as they are easy to extract. Besides, they do not require using a mordant to help the color stick. To learn how to make a marigold dyed silk scarf and other fabrics, you can find the procedure in various online sites.
They are an effective trap crop
For certain pest species, marigolds are an effective trap crop. Meaning it lures pests to them to keep them from attacking other valuable plants around them. For this reason, you will be able to keep off pests from your vegetables and get quality produce. For instance, slugs love marigolds, therefore, when you have marigolds surrounding the edges of your vegetable bed. The marigold flowers attract the slugs and help to protect your vegetables. If you spot any on the marigolds or some plants, collect them up before they create a big problem for the plants in your garden.
Use to feed the soil
Chop and drop marigold that you do not harvest at the end of the growing season in your vegetable garden to feed the soil by adding it as organic matter to the growing areas. According to some research, it is a belief that they help to reduce nematode issues. Although it may not kill the nematodes after the living marigolds are cut off. Regardless of this, it will increase the organic matter. As a result, it will boost the soil life that is essential in keeping the negative nematode numbers down.
You can cut for floral display
Marigolds add a beautiful pop of color in your garden. Still, you can cut them to use for floral displays inside your home. You can borrow ideas in various sites that focus on designing with marigolds. Optionally, you can use marigolds to make garlands for your garden or your home decor. This comes in handy when you need one for special events. Such as for weddings and various other occasions, especially in places like India. Also, an event where they are popular is the Mexican Day of the dead.
For long-lasting arrangements
The marigold flowers are also suitable for drying. There are several methods that you can use to dry your marigolds. One of the easiest and common way is to hang bunches of flowers to dry in a warm area with low humidity. It should be out of direct sunlight and a place with good circulation. They will dry if they are not disturbed for at least three weeks. To use this dry marigold there are several decorative ways you can try at home. Optionally, you can dry the petals to use them to make marigold tea, that has good color and mild to bland flavor. Thus, it is best to mix it with another botanical such as mint to improve the taste.