Tagetes, African Marigold, Aztec Marigold, Mexican Marigold

Tagetes erecta

Family: Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Tagetes (TAG-e-teez) (Info)
Species: erecta (ee-RECK-tuh) (Info)
View this plant in a garden



Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


12-15 in. (30-38 cm)


Not Applicable

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us



Bloom Color:


Gold (yellow-orange)

Bright Yellow

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Phoenix, Arizona

Lucerne Valley, California

Oak View, California

San Francisco, California

Tracy, California

Auburndale, Florida

Brandon, Florida

Gainesville, Florida

Hollywood, Florida

Jacksonville, Florida(2 reports)

Keystone Heights, Florida

Kissimmee, Florida

Old Town, Florida

Port Orange, Florida

Waverly, Georgia

Chicago, Illinois

Itasca, Illinois

Derby, Kansas

Olathe, Kansas

Topeka, Kansas

Cumberland, Maryland

Waban, Massachusetts

Perryville, Missouri

Piedmont, Missouri

Port Norris, New Jersey

Newport, North Carolina

Newalla, Oklahoma

, Sor-Trondelag

Leesville, South Carolina

North Augusta, South Carolina

Haltom City, Texas

Houston, Texas

Mcallen, Texas

Red Oak, Texas

San Antonio, Texas

Spring, Texas

Madison, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jan 13, 2019, Davard from Topeka, KS (Zone 6a) wrote:

I got this seed in a "Cut Flower Mix" and had no idea what I was getting. (This was just my first year planting, so I went with easy). I never realized Marigolds got that huge, being used to the small varieties sold in nurseries. But here were these 4" marigolds that were 3 feet tall and still growing. When they past 4 feet, I had to give them some support to keep them off the lawn. Of course, they had competition in the height department from the 5 foot tall Evening Primrose and 6 foot tall Celosias that were from the same seed packet.

I should mention that I didn't just grow these in good old Topeka, Kansas dirt (clay that tends to run alkaline). I had filled what was effectively a raised bed (terrace) with a mix of the aforementioned clay (taking the clayiest pieces out)... read more


On Apr 25, 2014, montsho from Tracy, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

Amazing plant for the butterfly garden. Mine grew to about 4ft before I had to start cutting it back. i dont know how big it would have actually gotten. Waves of flowers that begin in April dont stop until December here in CA. The flowers actually glow with an inner fire that you have to see to believe. i started 4 more plants this year from the seeds of the first plant and all are growing at the same rate and blooming. Great with verbena bonariensis for the butterfly garden.


On Sep 20, 2009, steadycam3 from Houston Heights, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I received my seeds in trade here on DG and did not know quite what to expect. The plants are 4 feet tall covered with single orange blossoms and lots of foliage. The branches were so heavy that they broke off the main stem and fell but continued to grow, rooting along the stem where they fell. I would say stake these plants early and support the lower branches. My plant's main stem is 1" in diameter. Plant toward the back of the bed due to their height.


On Jul 7, 2009, kitty_mom from Waverly, GA (Zone 8b) wrote:

If anything will grow in hot humid Southern Georgia, this will! These flowers just bloom constantly, wave after wave. I planted the "Flower Power" variety, neon yellow, sun orange, and a couple of red-orange bushes came up. The only thing that has hurt them so far is a torrential storm that tore through and snapped some of the main stems on a few bushes. My advice would be to stake them for support, but other than that- they are problem free and well worth the money.


On Aug 30, 2006, kaenjie2 from Sabah,
Malaysia wrote:

Expect disease and insect attack when this plant grown in shade. This plant requires full sun and heat. Adding humus or compost will greatly fertile them and help build resistance against disease and insect.


On Jul 27, 2006, patsymm from bristol,
United Kingdom wrote:

Help!! I am new to gardening having just lost my husband who loved African Marigolds I.. He left some for me to grow and they have been growing nicely but now I notice something is eating then.. I find silvery slime extracts on the leaf ( what are left of them) and I think I have discoved some type of black worm on the leaf.. Can some tell me how to treat this problem please...


On Mar 11, 2006, desert_witch from Lucerne Valley, CA (Zone 8a) wrote:

I'm so pleased to have found this beauty detailed here in the Plantfiles! I scattered a marigold mix last year and was amazed at the variety in colour and size. These African Marigolds grew to about 3' tall with huge bright yellow flowers, one type with close curled petals and one with more open, longer petals, and one bright orange variety. I LOVE these Flowers!


On May 17, 2004, Toxicodendron from Piedmont, MO (Zone 6a) wrote:

I love African Marigolds because the flowers are so large and long lasting. 'French Vanilla Improved' has a more compact habit than many of the earlier "white" marigolds and has had some of the strong odor bred out of it. It is great for bouquets or mixing with other plants in the border.


On Nov 20, 2003, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:

I just saw some huge specimens of this plant growing in the ground at a local plant nursery here in Northcentral Florida, zone 8b. You could see their bright yellow flowers from several hundred yards away. This is just a strikingly beautiful plant. We've had a very long, mild and sunny Fall, with no frost yet, so these guys have had plenty of time to get large.


On Nov 19, 2003, mrsmitty from Jacksonville, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

These are sold as "Crackerjack Marigold" by many seed companies. They grow best direct seeded.


On Apr 5, 2003, luvsflowers from Irving, TX wrote:

These do great in the Southern USA. They bloom from March thru late fall. They are also great as a companion plant for tomatoes as they are a natural insect repellant.


On Oct 28, 2001, poppysue from Westbrook, ME (Zone 5a) wrote:

The African marigolds are the tallest of all the marigold species. Most have large fully double blooms in bright orange, gold or yellow. They do best in full sun and when the nights are warm.