Crackerjack (Marigold/African tall)
Latin Name: Tagetes erecta
Item #: 1055
HYBRID MARIGOLD (Tall African) Annual
Height: 22 - 36 in/56 - 91 cm Tagetes erecta Approx. 9,000 seeds per oz/28 seeds per g Germination: 3 - 7 days at 75-80°F/24-27°C soil temp. Sow 1/4 oz/7 g of seed for approx. 900 - 1,000 plants.
NOTE: Some varieties of this class may be used for potted plants and greenhouse cut flowers as well as bedding plants.
GREENHOUSE CUT FLOWERS: This species will not perform well as a cut flower during extreme periods of heat (July and August). We recommend a Jan. or Feb. sowing, transplanted directly into raised benches, spaced 4 in/2 cm apart both ways. If plants are grown cool 50-55°F/l0-13°C, single stems will flower in April and May. August sowings should produce cut flowers by Dec or Jan.
GREENHOUSE BEDDING PLANTS: Never sow tall Marigolds too early. Most sowings of this type should be made about 6 weeks before box plant sales begin. Tall, spindly plants may be pinched back without ill effects. The key to growing nice box plants with this species is to keep them on the dry side and grow at 65°F/l8°C. For earlier flowering plants sow Apr. 15th. - May 1st., 1/4 in/6 mm deep, cover lightly with coarse vermiculite. Use bottom heat (heating cables) keep moist until germination with temperate water, to maintain soil temp. As soon as seedlings emerge limit day length to 9 hours per day with black cloth.
TRANSPLANT into paks about 20 days after seeding, grow at 65°F/18°C, continue to shade with black cloth for 10 more days (a total of 30 days from seeding). Remove black cloth at this point, bud tips should be in evidence and their development should continue normally, flowering by selling time in June.
HOME GARDENER: Sow indoors as above May 1st. Transplant indoors into paks or 3 in pots, 15 days later. Do not transplant outdoors until night temps. average 45°F/7°C. Use a systemic insecticide twice a month to control red spider mite. Due to short summers and the price of the seed, outdoor sowings are not practical in the north.