“Previous parent lines of Hedge Marigolds were very difficult to maintain, and the varieties disappeared from seed catalogs,” says Beam Sailern Senhuk, marketing director at AmeriSeed, a specialized flower seed breeder and producer with a large assortment of F1 marigolds. “After four years of breeding, we have achieved a successful replacement for the Gold Coins Series: “Hedge-Mary.”
Beam Sailern Senhuk and the new Hedge-Mary
A disappearing variety
Senhuk explains that, in the past, the company Bodger Seeds used to be the leading breeder and producer of Hybrid Marigold seed varieties. Bodger produced a line of Hedge Marigolds that was available in three different colors. These Hedge Marigolds were sold worldwide for landscaping purposes and home gardener cut flower production. “The most popular series was called ‘Gold Coins’, available in three colors: Sovereign Gold, Doubloon Yellow, and Double Eagle Orange, all named after gold coins from different countries and eras. The varieties also became popular in Asia for making marigold garlands. Unfortunately, the female parents of the Gold Coins series were very difficult to maintain, and these heirloom varieties disappeared.”
A successful replacement
First of all, what exactly is a Hedge Marigold? “Hedge Marigolds are tall varieties that were grown in landscapes and garden areas as hedges; often in long beds and mass plantings, with plants spaced closely together to produce a tall, flowing show of color. The Hedgerow F1 Marigolds were a major milestone in Hybrid Marigold breeding and have sadly disappeared from seed catalogs,” says Senhuk. However, AmeriSeed has not been sitting around since its disappearance. “For four years, we have been working on breeding a replacement for the Gold Coin series, and we are now ready to release our new Heirloom series, which we have called Hedge-Mary.”
The new variety
Hedge-Mary is available in three colors, Yellow, Orange, and Gold, as well as a formula mix. The variety is easy to look after and can also be used as a home garden cut flower. The plants and flowers help protect vegetable and flower gardens from unwanted pests, and they attract bees and ladybugs. Another advantage is that deer and rabbits will not find these flowers appealing. Below are some specific details.
Flower size: 8-10 cm
Plant height: 55-60 cm short day, 80-100 cm long day
Plant width: 45-50 cm short day, 55-60 cm long day
Total crop time first flowering to end crop: 120 days
320—340 seeds per gram
Tips for growers
If you are planning to grow “Hedge-Mary”, here are some helpful tips: 1. Marigolds thrive when exposed to full sun.
2. Regularly deadhead flowers by pinching or cutting to the nearest set of lower leaves. This will improve the appearance and stimulate additional blooms.
3. Hedge-Mary prefers moderately fertile soil with good drainage.
4. Irrigate marigolds at the base of the plant, not from overhead, and allow the soil to dry before irrigating again.
5. Cut flower marigolds in vases can last for 7-10 days and can last longer if the water is changed every 2-3 days and a cut flower preservative is used.
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