Marsh Marigold: Planting Tips

Marsh marigold is prolific plant that likes the margins of ponds and streams. A marsh marigold is quite happy growing in 6 inches of water.

Propagating Marsh Marigolds

To grow the marsh marigold from seed you really need to have your own ready seed supply. The seeds are best planted when they are freshly matured from the plant. Seeds collected from wild plants are often good enough to grow and you will be able to see from the parent plant what yours will grow to look like.

As soon as the seed is ready it needs to be planted in a good quality seed compost or a healthy and fully decomposed garden compost. Plant individual seeds in pots and keep them well watered but also ensure that the pots are well drained. Once they do germinate the plants do very well and can be transplanted.


Plant the potted seedlings in early spring to mid summer, as soon as they are about 2 inches tall with at least four healthy leaves. The seedlings must be well watered until they are established. Since marsh marigolds do very well in the margins of ponds and streams you can safely plant them along a backyard water feature. If you have an area of boggy ground, they will also do very well there. Like most marigolds the seedlings will grow readily and will need little attention once established. Unlike many marigolds, the marsh marigold does very well in the shade.  

Splitting Mature Plants

In the spring before the growth really gets started you can carefully dig up some mature plants. You will see that they can be split quite easily into two, three or even more separate plants, each with its own root network. Split the plant as seems best and also remove some of the bigger leaves. Removing the bigger leaves will reduce moisture loss through the natural process of transpiration. Transpiration is almost like sweating in people. It is a side product of photosynthesis and helps to cool the leaf down and control the chemical reactions taking place to convert sunlight into sugars. Removing the bigger leaves will also encourage the newly created small plant to put its energy into reinforcing the stem that has been split and replacing the missing leaves. The divided plant can be planted in the same conditions as the seed grown plants but will be able to grow much quicker because of the mature root system that it already has.

The marsh marigold is a delightful plant that will add color and mark the boundaries of boggy sites within a garden. Used as a liner for streams and drains it is also a useful marker to indicate any adverse developments in the water supply to an area served by the streams. Because the marsh marigold is not a very hardy plant you should make a point of collecting and planting the new seeds as they mature if you want to maintain a good supply. An early frost can kill off all the plants in an area if they haven’t already gone dormant in the soil.