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African Marigolds stunted

Lady's Island, SC(Zone 8b)

I bought 2 yellow African Marigolds (about 2-3 inches tall and wide) back in early April. I planted them in Osmocote Organic garden soil & Black Kow compost mixed in with native soil (sand...LOL) in my front flower bed. They receive full sun from 10:30am to 2:30pm and again from 5pm to sunset. When I planted them, I made sure the roots were rootbound as they were in the pot i bought them in. I had loosened the roots and gently laid them around the mound I had made in the hole.

Here we are 2 months later, and the Marigolds have continued to bloom, but they haven't grown up or out at all. They are still the same size as when I purchased them. My neighbor planted hers in a pot a few weeks before I planted mine and hers haven't grown up or out either. We purchased them from different places. Both of ours look healthy. They just won't grow LOL

Any one have some suggestions?

Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

I dont know which type of African marigolds you selected but there are several different types and sizes of plants and flowers depending on type, so it may be this is the natural size for the type you have, IF they are healthy, blooming and not damaged then I would leave them alone and just enjoy them for the rest of the season, just make sure you dead-head often, all the spent flowers and give a liquid feed maybe once a week so they have the strength to bloom right through the season.

Did you get any labels with info where you bought the plants as the info on that would have given hight, planting info and other care, if you've lost this info, go back to store and look at the plants like your and search for a label to guide you.
Good luck. WeeNel.

Lady's Island, SC(Zone 8b)

WeeNel,

The information on the tag reads:

Mounding Annual
African Marigold (Tagetes erecta)
Sun: Full Sun 6+ Hours
Water: Low once established
Size: 18-20"
Spacing: 8-12"
Bloom: Spring, Summer Fall


I do deadhead when a flower is 1/2 dried/dead or fully dried/dead. However, I haven't had to dead head very much because the flowers last for weeks at a time. When I planted them, I added a dime size of 10-10-10- slow release fertilizer. Should I still occasionally use a liquid feed? If so, what NPK ratio do you suggest I use?

Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

I would do a HALF strength dose of Miracle grow liquid feef next time you water them, once you find there has been NO damage done, a couple of weeks later perhaps, you could use the full strength dose recommended on the bottle,

There are other things you can use to feed your plants free, use gloves and pick nice healthy lush Nettles (they sting you) wear gloves, put them in a bucket and chop the nettles up by using garden grass shears, then fill the bucket with water, cover it and leave for about 4 weeks.
there should be a brown liquid like strong coffee but will smell, you need to use the liquid diluted to the colour of weak tea,(baby tea) water this onto the soil around your plants flowers / shrubs / veg. you can do the exact same with a cotton bag with horse / cow manure even just fresh laid, dilute to the same colour as the nettles it is a free feed for our plants if you have somewhere to store the buckets or barrels of the stuff till ready for use.

Good luck. WeeNel.

Lady's Island, SC(Zone 8b)

I haven't seen Dead Nettle around here & don't have access to cow poop...unless Lowes sells it in a bag. I know they sell Composted Manure but not sure about un-composted manure. I'll check on that.

In the mean time, I am just gonna fertilize with 1/2 strength of Miracle Gro liquid feed and just enjoy the flowers. Hopefully, they will eventually grow UP :)

Thanks!

Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

Sorry Savvydaze but the home made liquid feed has to be made from fresh cow / horse manure so that the richness and nutrients are fermented from the POO how ever, I do know there are several dried animal droppings food available now, the best dried and pelleted type is chicken manures it is very good and you don't use a lot of it when you scatter or add it to planting holes, a little goes a long way as they say.
Happy gardening and good luck. WeeNel.

Lady's Island, SC(Zone 8b)

I'll keep an eye out for any products like that in our local plant stores or maybe I can buy some online. And just so you know...one of the African Marigolds actually grew up an inch while we had this conversation LOL

Thanks for all your help :)

Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

Oh Good news, they must have been reading our mail and thought "jeeeeeez we had better get a shift on or were for the compost bin way before our time" ha, ha, ha.
Take care and enjoy your gardening, it's good fun when it all works out, when it don't, well you know the story.
Best Ragards. WeeNel.

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