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Common Name: Irish Lace
Tagetes filifolia is an annual plant that can grow up to 0.40 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and source of materials.
C. and S. America - Mexico to Costa Rica
Requires a well-drained moderately fertile soil in a sunny position[
]. Grows well in heavy clay soils and in sandy soils[
Grows well with tomatoes.
Removing dead flowers before the seed is formed will extend the flowering season[
Plants are prone to slugs, snails and botrytis[
The plants are used as a food flavouring[
Although no specific mention of the following use has been seen for this species, most if not all members of this genus probably have a similar effect to a greater or lesser degree. Secretions from the roots of growing plants have an insecticidal effect on the soil, effective against nematodes and to some extent against keeled slugs. These secretions are produced about 3 - 4 months after sowing[
]. The growing plant is also said to repel insects and can be grown amongst crops such as potatoes and tomatoes.
Seed - sow early spring in a greenhouse. Only just cover the seed. Germination usually takes place within 2 weeks. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out after the last expected frosts.