Pot Marigolds are considered by many gardening experts as one of the most versatile flowers to grow in a garden, especially since it is easy to grow. Seeds sown in the spring, in most soils, will germinate freely in sunny or half-sunny locations. They do best, however, if planted in sunny locations with rich, well-drained soil. The leaves are spirally arranged, 5-18 cm long, simple, and slightly hairy. The flower heads range from pastel yellow to deep orange, and are 3-7 cm across, with both ray florets and disc florets. They have a spicy aroma and are produced from spring to autumn in temperate climates. It is recommended to deadhead (removal of dying flower heads) the plants regularly to maintain even blossom production.
Pot Marigolds are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Cabbage Moth, The Gothic, Large Yellow Underwing and Setaceous Hebrew Character. Be advised not to plant in vegetable gardens.
Pot Marigold petals are considered edible. They are often used to add color to salads, and calendula extract is commonly added to chicken feed to produce darker egg yolks. Their aroma, however, is not sweet, and resembles the smell of hops in beer. The oil from its seed contains calendic acid, an essential component in soap products.
Source : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calendula
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