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New house - new to gardening - identification help please

Hi there
we have just moved into our dream home with a fantastic garden. There is some existing planting of course, and I could do with some help identifying it all. Expect many more posts from me! I think someone used to care about the garden but have neglected it for at least a year now. 

For this one, I have a whole bed of what I think are Marigolds (mixed). They are lovely and I have just started deadheading. They are very ‘leggy’ so my first question is if I should cut them back at the end of the season? 

My second question - there are four other types of plants in between the marigolds. I expect they are weeds, but with the somewhat erratic planting around the garden, it could be that she just dotted random plants in so I want to check. 

Im not sure what order the photos are going to appear in, but there are 4 photos of the plants that may be weeds and two ‘general’ photos of the marigolds. 

I hope someone can help! Thanks very much in anticipation!

 

Posts

  • amancalledgeorgeamancalledgeorge South LondonPosts: 2,302
    The orange flowers are a variety of Calendula. They self seed so if you don't want them there you'll have to dead head or weed out any young plants that come through. The second one looks like Hesperis Matronalis aka Sweet Rocket that is going to seed, lovely evening waft of fragrance and the pollinators absolutely love it. 
    To Plant a Garden is to Believe in Tomorrow
  • The orange flowers are a variety of Calendula. They self seed so if you don't want them there you'll have to dead head or weed out any young plants that come through. The second one looks like Hesperis Matronalis aka Sweet Rocket that is going to seed, lovely evening waft of fragrance and the pollinators absolutely love it. 
    Thanks for that. I do want the calendula. Do you know if I can cut them back after flooring is over? They are very leggy so am hoping they might grow back a bit bushier if I do.

    the sweet rocket might be self seeded there, but I shall leave it in place!
  • JennyJJennyJ DoncasterPosts: 6,138
    The calendula (also known as pot marigolds) are hardy annuals.  What they want to do is set seed and then die, and the seeds will grow into plants that will flower next year.  To keep them flowering as long as possible this year, you can cut off the dead flowers and they'll try to make more because you stopped them making seed.   If you want more for next year, leave some dead flowers on so that they develop seeds. You can leave them to drop in situ or collect seeds and sow them where you want them. Maybe dead-head some of the plants and leave some to set seed. 
    I think it might be too late to cut back hard to make them bush out, but you have plenty so you could try it for a few plants.  Next year (or this Autumn if they've grown by then) you can nip out the tips of the new young plants to make them branch out before they start flowering.
  • amancalledgeorgeamancalledgeorge South LondonPosts: 2,302
    Spot on @JennyJ
    To Plant a Garden is to Believe in Tomorrow
  • JennyJ said:
    The calendula (also known as pot marigolds) are hardy annuals.  What they want to do is set seed and then die, and the seeds will grow into plants that will flower next year.  To keep them flowering as long as possible this year, you can cut off the dead flowers and they'll try to make more because you stopped them making seed.   If you want more for next year, leave some dead flowers on so that they develop seeds. You can leave them to drop in situ or collect seeds and sow them where you want them. Maybe dead-head some of the plants and leave some to set seed. 
    I think it might be too late to cut back hard to make them bush out, but you have plenty so you could try it for a few plants.  Next year (or this Autumn if they've grown by then) you can nip out the tips of the new young plants to make them branch out before they start flowering.
    Thanks so much for the information. As a new gardener, it’s so daunting when it just says ‘prune’ or ‘don’t’ etc. I will leave some flowers on (there are plenty of them) so they can self seed. I am more than happy to see this display again next year. 

    An additional question - will they simply ‘die back’ altogether, or should I discard all that are clearly this year’s plants at the end of the season?
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 19,938
    I would start with removing all of the weed in picture 3, it’s rosebay willow herb and if it sets seed it will be everywhere!
    I would also remove the plant with the pointy leaves in picture 4. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,532
    In the very mild climate where I live, some of the marigold plants survive the winter but after flowering their socks off all summer, they are very tatty looking.  Better to pull them out - they're not deep-rooted - and leave the space for the new ones which will appear in the spring.  If you compost the old plants, bear in mind that you will have marigold seedlings wherever you use the compost.  But it's easy enough to hoe them off.
  • JennyJJennyJ DoncasterPosts: 6,138

    An additional question - will they simply ‘die back’ altogether, or should I discard all that are clearly this year’s plants at the end of the season?
    In nature I suppose they'd die and eventually rot down in the soil, but gardeners generally pull them up when they've stopped flowering and look tatty. They should have set their seed by then (if they don't it's pretty cheap to buy a packet). Give them a bit of a shake to make sure any seeds still on the plants fall onto the ground. 
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