2023 Field Notes

Giant Marigold -- Tagetes erecta -- Giant Yellow and Giant Orange


Sown 4/7
Germination 4/9 (2 days)

Germination counts
4/9, 1pm: 2
4/10, 7am: 21
4/10, 4pm: 46
4/11, 7am: 41/24 (65)
4/11, 9pm: 43/30 (73)
4/12, 7am: 43/32 (75)
4/12, 6pm: 43/33 (76)
4/14, 7am: 43/35 (78)
Final Count After Thinning: 68

Split germination numbers above are for varieties Yellow and Orange.

4/7 -- Two varieties (orange and yellow) sown into a 72 cell tray. Johnny's gave me only a few extra yellow, and a LOT extra oranges, so I doubled up some yellow cells to use up those seeds, and if I feel so inclined, might use the extra oranges in another tray. Used potting mix, lightly covered the seeds with the mix, watered after sowing and put the straight onto the heat mat set to 78 degrees.

4/9 -- Germination! Spotted a couple of these mid-day today and four total by the end of the day. Expect a bunch more tomorrow and the day after.

4/10 -- Germinating big time right now, especially the yellow variety. The oranges are coming along a little more slowly so far.

4/11 -- Germinating excellently. Sowed 82 of these in total, we've germinated 73, so 89% already and not done yet.

4/14 -- These look great, no issues, and a crazy germination rate - 78/82 for 95%!

4/24 -- Thinned these today, fortunately slightly (I hate thinning). Pulled two oranges and eight yellows, and moved one yellow as an experiment. That leaves me with 32 orange and 36 yellow for 68 total on the 72.

4/30 -- These are a star of the greenhouse, along with Cosmos, same as last year. They're growing great, getting tall, no issues. Can't wait to plant them out!

5/22 -- Transplanted 18 of these into a 4x8 bed. I thought about either pinching these, which is a recommendation, or trying to put a few more in the bed, but I did 18 non-pinched into an adjacent bed last year and these did amazingly well - maybe my most successful planting last year - so decided to repeat exactly last years planting plan. I do have an extra bunch of these - I'll likely plant some additional plants elsewhere, and possibly pinch them to see what that looks like. I ended up alternating yellow and orange seedlings per row, should look nice once flowers appear. Fertilized them with the high phosphorus solution.

5/29 -- Planted another seven of these in the "experiments" row - the experiment is pinching, which I did on these for the first time. Simply chopped off the top of the plant, made sure I selected seven seedlings where that operation was easy to accomplish.

6/13 -- No issues here. The set of these in the raised bed are flourishing and buds have shown up, should have flowers before too long. The ones in the row are doing fine, definitely behind their bed counterparts (because of course they are) but the plants themselves look healthy.

6/25 -- All good here. First full flower is out (it's a yellow) and many more coming (also yellows). The oranges are coming too, but definitely seem to be slightly behind. Just to be clear, the oranges look fine.

7/2 -- Lots of yellows out now. Still no oranges yet, which is curious, although they're coming (there are buds). Did have to stake a few of these yesterday, as they were leaning heavily to one side. I had to do this last year too. The pinched set down in the row are starting to bud too, and are definitely bushier than the others, as one would expect.

7/3 -- First orange out today! It's a lot smaller than the yellows, but it is the first one, so we'll see what the next set of flowers on that plant look like. Still, it's a very nice flower.

7/11 -- Second set of these (the pinched ones) are starting to flower now and look very good.

8/5 -- All good here, these, much like last year, look great and are easy deadheaders. I have needed to stake them a bunch individually, but that was ALSO true last year, so seems to just be a thing these need. They get BIG - huge circumference on the stems - and then big flowers that add a lot of weight.

8/25 -- The rain has caused some issues with these over the last couple of weeks - specifically, with the pinched marigolds that I planted out. Without each other for support, and given how big and branchy they got, five of them have basically split in two and I've had to remove them. The water just bogs them down, and we've had a ridiculous amount of water. As a result, and given how the non-pinched plants look (great), don't think I'll pinch them again. If I do, I'll need to give them very solid support.