In addition to the mass of useful properties, calendula also has high decorative qualities. These small yellow or orange flowers can decorate any border or border with bright, sunny spots. Moreover, in areas where calendula is planted, you can not worry about the condition of the soil, because these plants have high disinfecting qualities and are able to repel pests.
Marigold flowers and how to grow them from seeds
Many of you must have wondered why this plant is popularly called marigold. After all, the description of the calendula plant bears little resemblance to nails. The fact is that the shape of the seeds is similar to marigolds.
In nature, 15 species of this plant are known.
Below are a photo and description of the most common type of calendula – medicinal, or pharmacy:
This is a herbaceous culture with a height of 15 to 75 cm. The stems are strongly branched, the shoots are thick, ribbed, light green. The leaves are simple, elongated, with a heart-shaped base. The inflorescences are simple, semi-double and double, from light yellow to bright orange.
This plant is photophilous and unpretentious to soils, however, it develops better on rich in organic substances, sufficiently moist soils.
The root system of calendula is powerful, with a shortened taproot and a small number of highly branched lateral roots.
Calendula blooms on the 60-65th day after sowing and blooms profusely until frost.
Bushes are sprawling and compact; high (75 cm) and semi-high (40-55 cm). The shoots are strong, the color of the shoots and leaves of various varieties is light and dark green. The flowers are original, up to 8-10 cm in diameter, and especially the fruits of calendula. Their achenes are up to 3 cm long, curved, crescent-shaped, with longitudinal rows of spines.
When to plant marigold seeds in the garden? To preserve the high decorativeness of the flower beds, it is sown at different times – from March to November. In March, low varieties are sown on seedlings in pots to speed up their flowering.
How to plant calendula seeds in mid-spring and summer? In April (the usual time), seeds are sown directly into the ground in nests at a distance of 15-25 cm from each other for flowering in June. In mid-June, sowing is carried out for flowering calendula in August. In autumn, there are the brightest and juiciest inflorescences.
And when to plant calendula before winter so that it blooms as early as possible? Such winter sowing is done in November.
Do not forget to thin out the crops, otherwise the flowering will be weak.
When ripe, calendula seeds crumble easily, so they should be removed when most of them in the basket have turned brown. The remaining seeds ripen well when dried in baskets.
Before planting calendula, it should be remembered that the terry varieties of this plant, when grown together with non-terry ones, quickly pollinate and lose their decorative qualities.
Calendula is valued for its unusually bright, orange and yellow tones, color of inflorescences, remontant flowering, the ability of flowers to be well preserved in cut form and for unpretentiousness in culture. Growing calendula flowers in flower decoration is used for flowerbeds, flower beds , borders. Plantings of these plants look especially impressive on a green background of a lawn or in combination with flowers of purple and blue tones (ageratum, delphinium , alissum, etc.).
Growing calendula from seeds is also very useful for the garden. Marigold flowers attract many beneficial insects to the garden. Sown between vegetables, it will not only decorate the garden, but also get rid of ticks, scale insects and root rot. The soil where calendula grows is disinfected from pathogenic microbes.
On flower beds, calendula is affected by slugs, aphids, various types of scoops, and also suffers from powdery mildew.
In calendula, more double flowers grow from narrow and strongly curved seeds than from large, slightly curved ones.
Flower petals can be used to decorate dishes: they are edible and have a mild aroma. And young leaves will give a fresh touch to salads.
Varieties of calendula and photos of flowers
Below are descriptions and photos of calendula of various varieties – short, medium and tall:
Varieties undersized (25-30 cm):
“Fiesta Hitana” – the shortest variety (height 25 cm) with large terry inflorescences of bright, saturated, sunny colors. Inflorescences can be cream, yellow, orange and bicolor.
Medium-sized varieties (45-50 cm):
“Pink Surprise” – a variety with double inflorescences, the pink shade of inflorescences for this culture is a really pleasant surprise!
“Radio” – valued for the bright orange-red color of large inflorescences, abundant and long flowering. Inflorescences-baskets are terry, with petals originally folded into a tube.
The Touch is another unique addition to the collection.
As you can see in the photo, the calendula flowers of this variety are large, expressively colored, as a rule, terry:
“Pygmi” – a novelty with large (up to 6 cm) double lemon-cream inflorescences and mosaic dark green leaves.
“Russian Size” – a new variety, the flowers are large (8 cm), completely double, orange-yellow in color.
Tall varieties (60-70 cm):
“Golden Emperor” – large bright yellow terry inflorescences.
“Pacific Beauty” – a variety with huge (up to 10 cm in diameter) bright double inflorescences on numerous shoots.
“Green Heart” is an amazing new coloration. A large bright orange flower is decorated with a green core.
“Kabluna Orange” – a variety with large semi-double anemone-shaped inflorescences. It has an original appearance due to the strongly overgrown tubular flowers.
“Kabluna Gold” – a variety with terry yellow inflorescences with a brown core.
“Kabluna Epricot” – one of the most decorative varieties of calendula has become even more interesting and elegant. Large original inflorescences have acquired a new, exquisite yellow-cream color.