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SuesynSuesyn Posts: 624
Could someone advise me please. I sowed African  marigolds  to put in the greenhouse with tomatoes etc to attract pollinators but none have germinated.  Will Cosmos  Ladybird  (which are orange and yellow ) do the same job or should I buy some bedding plants. I wondered if it is the smell rather than colour which is attractive. I suppose it must work as so many people seem to do it. 


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 16,537
    What you want are French Marigolds, not African marigolds. African Marigolds need more heat to germinate.  Sarah Raven recommends Tagetes Linnaeus, but I used Tagetes Patula  single flowered such as Fantasia mixed from Suttons.  You need single flowered to bring in hoverflies.  They should germinate in less than a week. You still have time to sow some. 
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 9,983
    I plant French marigolds and basil amongst my toms in the greenhouse.
    As fb says above, the variety is not really important, just get a single variety so that insects can get to the pollen.
    My tomato plants are about 4" and I'll be sowing French marigolds in the next few days, so I can plant them out together in about a month.
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • B3B3 Posts: 24,490
    I think it's probably the smell rather than the colour.
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 9,983
    Yes, it is the smell that deters aphids which is why the variety is unimportant.
    I find basil helps for the same reason too.
    I also plant French marigolds amongst my runner beans
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • SuesynSuesyn Posts: 624
    edited April 2019
    OK,  I'll get some more seeds and have another go. I thought it was the colour that attracts them, goodness knows what I am going to do with the Cosmos, they germinated no problem. Garden club plant sale here we come! 
    Thanksfor your advice. 
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