I thought Marigolds were so resistant to pests
that one plants them alongside others as deterrent!
Instead, my dwarf Marigolds have been chawed
up; also some Italian Parsley near them. Weird!
Any idea what might be responsible?
It's a myth. Marigolds are magnets for spider mites. There is only one variety
of marigold which will help manage root knot nematodes.
On Sat, 13 Sep 2003 20:30:21 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@Underworld.com opined:
I think one of the problems is people expect there to be
indestructible, cure-all, amazing plants...there are none and never
will be. A hungry animal or insect will eat anything if it has too.
Every plant will be eaten or infested by something. Hell, goats can
eat arsenic with no problem. Every animal and insect can have a
different biology. The goal seems to be to support a natural
diversity--more like nature than groomed to be how Man likes it.
Insecticides obviously kill fairly indescriminately and don't
recognize that you are disrupting a food chain amongst insects.
I was psyched to see butterflys, birds, praying mantis and even a
dragonfly in my little garden. I used a store-bought insecticide once
and it killed the plant. My home-grown version never did any damage.
My one lone hornworm was infected with wasp eggs. I see the little
black wasps every now and then and I'm glad I didn't try to kill them
off when I saw them favoring a spot under my step.
I planted Dwarf French Marigold (Tagetes patula), caledula(also called
Pot marigolds), petunias, nasturtiums, onions & garlic around my
biggest garden bed. Not only did it look great as a surrounding
border, I believe it did help. I will never know if the Marigolds
killed nematodes. But I never saw flying visitors on them much. The
Calednula got lots of visitors by contrast (BTW so did my sunflowers,
baby's breath, & cosmos). And the two big parsleys surrounded by
marigolds were ignored by the egglaying Black Swallowtail butterfly
(it flew right over them three times) and it only hit one smaller
plant in a pot. My marigolds had no spider mites, but my nasturtiums
which grew pressed up against them were covered in aphids (Nasturtiums
were said to be a trap crop for aphids). After fighting them back I
eventually removed the aphid covered nasturtiums. I had no other
aphids in that flower bed. I did have them in my corn-no nasturtiums
I had snails in the garden but I think they were mostly eaten by the
birds early in the season. I would find lots of empty and broken
shells, which confused me until others here pointed out that birds
pick them out from the shells. The only serious pest damage I saw was
to my Angel's Trumpet. I saw some orange beetles on it and lots of
yellow eggs everywhere. Two weeks later I began seeing a praying
mantis which would visit my garden rack, my big bed and my landlords
tomatoes. SInce then the only annoyance has been Cicada Killer wasps.
DiGiTAL ViNYL (no email)
Zone 6b/7, Westchester Co, NY, 1 mile off L.I.Sound
1st Year Gardener
We planted marigolds while blue rug juniper was becoming established.
The first year the marigolds grew and bloomed like weeds, as we
deadheaded everyday. (The awful smell was intense on the hands but
the color intense). The second year the marigolds were eaten by the
slugs, and that is when we stopped growing them. Inspect your plants
with a flashlight a couple hours after sunset to check for
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