Calendula officinalis was growing in Virginia gardens by the 1600s. The petals were used to flavor soups and stews, earning the plant the nickname "pot marigold."
Pot marigold is a cheery annual that grows best in full sun and well-drained soil. Upright, bushy plants grow 1-2' tall and wide. Ranging from bright yellow to orange, the 2-3" daisy-like flowers will brighten your garden starting in the spring, making Calendula officinalis a great companion for nasturtiums and violas. Deadheading the plants will stimulate additional blooms. If hot summer weather causes the plants to decline, cut them back to encourage fall flowering.
Direct sow seed into the garden after the last frost date or start in a greenhouse 6-8 weeks before the last frost date. For fall flowering, direct sow seeds into the garden in the late summer. Space seeds 12-15" apart and cover with ¼" of soil. Seeds germinate in 10-14 days at soil temperatures between 68-70°F. USDA Zones 2-11.