Full sun. Well Drained soil.
If you’re dealing with heavy clay, mix in some compost to help with drainage.
Plant the seeds in your garden in the spring after your last frost date.
For best results, seeds stored over winter should be used during the next growing season.
At the end of the season, you can repeat the seed-storage process with your new marigold plants.
Alternatively, sow your seeds in raised beds.
Place groups of 3 or 4 seeds on the prepared soil, spaced 15-30cm inches apart, depending on the mature spread of your chosen variety.
Press seeds lightly into the soil, then cover lightly with the soil you pushed to the side so that they are buried 1cm deep.
Moisten the soil, then plant seedlings 10cm apart, 1cm deep.
Thoroughly water each plant after planting in the garden.
Plan to harvest the seeds when the petals are dry and the base of each bloom (the seed pod) is turning brown.
It's OK if there is still a little green left on the base.
If you wait until it is completely brown, it might have started to rot or mold.
To harvest, simply remove each marigold flower head from its stem.
Set a paper towel on a flat surface.
Then, holding the base of each bloom, pull off and discard the petals and leaves.
You will see the seeds inside attached to the base.
Set the prepared blooms on your paper towel for now.
Marigold seeds are long, slender, and pointed.
They are dark on one end and light on the other.
Take each bloom, and pull the seeds away from the base.
Then, discard the base.
Separate the seeds, and spread them out on your paper towel.
Allow the marigold seeds to air dry uncovered on the paper towel for about a week.
This will preserve them, so they don't mold or rot in storage.
Place the marigold seeds in a paper envelope to store over the winter.
Don't place them in a plastic bag because that will retain any residual moisture, which can cause the seeds to mold or rot.
Label the envelope, so you remember what's in it.
If you have multiple marigold varieties, use separate envelopes for their seeds unless you're not concerned about mixing plants.
Store the envelope in a cool, dry place.
Zone 1 - Cool
October , November , December
Zone 2 - Temperate
September , October , November , December
Zone 3 - Subtropical
August , September , October , November , December