How to Grow Calendula from Seed in Pots: A Step-by-Step Guide

Growing Calendula from Seed in Pots Calendula, also known as pot marigold, is a beautiful and versatile flower that can be easily grown from seed in pots. Whether you have a small balcony or a …

Growing Calendula from Seed in Pots

How to Grow Calendula from Seed in Pots: A Step-by-Step Guide

Calendula, also known as pot marigold, is a beautiful and versatile flower that can be easily grown from seed in pots. Whether you have a small balcony or a large garden, growing calendula in pots is a great way to add color and beauty to your space.

Calendula seeds are easy to find and can be sown directly into pots or started indoors and then transplanted. They prefer well-drained soil and full sun, so make sure to choose a sunny spot for your pots. Calendula is a hardy plant that can tolerate a wide range of conditions, making it a perfect choice for beginner gardeners.

When sowing calendula seeds, it’s important to keep the soil moist but not waterlogged. Watering from the bottom of the pot can help prevent overwatering and ensure that the seeds germinate successfully. Once the seedlings emerge, thin them out to give each plant enough space to grow and thrive.

Calendula blooms in a range of vibrant colors, from bright yellows and oranges to soft pinks and whites. The flowers are not only beautiful but also edible, with a slightly tangy flavor. They can be used to garnish salads, decorate cakes, or infused into oils and creams for their soothing properties.

Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting out, growing calendula from seed in pots is a rewarding and enjoyable experience. With their vibrant colors and easy care requirements, calendula plants are sure to brighten up any space and bring joy to your gardening endeavors.

Choosing the Right Pot

When it comes to growing calendula from seed in pots, choosing the right pot is essential for the success of your plants. Here are some factors to consider when selecting a pot for your calendula:


The size of the pot is important as it determines the amount of space your calendula plants have to grow. Calendula plants have a shallow root system, so a pot that is at least 6 inches deep should be sufficient. However, if you want your plants to grow larger and have more blooms, opt for a deeper pot.


Good drainage is crucial for the health of your calendula plants. Make sure the pot you choose has drainage holes at the bottom to allow excess water to escape. This will prevent waterlogging and root rot, which can be detrimental to the growth of your plants.

Additionally, consider using a pot with a saucer or tray to catch any excess water that drains out. This will prevent water from pooling around the base of the pot and causing damage to your plants.


There are various materials to choose from when it comes to pots, including plastic, terracotta, and ceramic. Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages.

Plastic pots are lightweight, affordable, and retain moisture well. However, they may not be as aesthetically pleasing as other materials and can deteriorate over time when exposed to sunlight.

Terracotta pots are porous, allowing for better airflow and drainage. They also provide a more natural and rustic look. However, they can be heavy and may require more frequent watering as they tend to dry out faster.

Ceramic pots are durable and come in a variety of designs and colors, making them a popular choice for decorative purposes. However, they can be expensive and may not provide as good drainage as other materials.

Consider your specific needs and preferences when choosing the material for your pot.

Overall, choosing the right pot for growing calendula from seed is crucial for the health and growth of your plants. Consider the size, drainage, and material of the pot to ensure optimal conditions for your calendula. With the right pot, you’ll be on your way to enjoying beautiful and vibrant calendula blooms.

Selecting the Right Soil

Choosing the right soil is crucial for the successful growth of calendula plants. Calendula thrives in well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. Here are some factors to consider when selecting the soil for your potted calendula:

1. Drainage

Calendula plants do not tolerate waterlogged soil, so it is important to choose a soil mix that provides good drainage. Look for a potting mix that contains perlite or vermiculite, as these materials help to improve soil drainage.

2. Organic Matter

Calendula plants benefit from soil that is rich in organic matter. Organic matter helps to improve soil structure, retain moisture, and provide essential nutrients to the plants. Look for a potting mix that contains compost or well-rotted manure to provide the necessary organic matter.

3. pH Level

Calendula plants prefer slightly acidic to neutral soil with a pH level between 6.0 and 7.0. It is recommended to test the pH level of your soil before planting and make any necessary adjustments. You can use a pH testing kit or take a soil sample to a local garden center for testing.

By selecting the right soil for your potted calendula, you can provide the optimal growing conditions for these beautiful and vibrant flowers.

Sowing the Seeds

Calendula seeds can be sown directly into pots or containers, or they can be started indoors and transplanted later. Here are the steps to sow calendula seeds:

1. Choose the Right Pot

Choose a pot or container that is at least 6 inches deep and has drainage holes at the bottom. This will ensure that the soil doesn’t become waterlogged and the roots have room to grow.

2. Prepare the Soil

Fill the pot with a well-draining potting mix. Calendula prefers a slightly acidic soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. You can also mix in some compost or organic matter to improve the soil’s fertility.

3. Sow the Seeds

How to Grow Calendula from Seed in Pots: A Step-by-Step Guide

Make small holes in the soil, about 1/4 inch deep. Place one or two calendula seeds in each hole and cover them with soil. Space the holes about 6 inches apart to allow the plants to spread out as they grow.

4. Water the Seeds

After sowing the seeds, water the pot gently to moisten the soil. Avoid overwatering, as this can cause the seeds to rot. Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged throughout the germination period.

5. Provide the Right Conditions

Place the pot in a sunny location where the plants will receive at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day. Calendula can tolerate partial shade, but full sun is ideal for optimal growth and blooming.

6. Thin the Seedlings

Once the seedlings emerge, thin them out to allow for proper growth. Remove the weaker seedlings, leaving only the strongest ones. This will prevent overcrowding and ensure that each plant has enough space to develop.

By following these steps, you can successfully sow calendula seeds in pots and enjoy a beautiful display of vibrant flowers.

Watering and Drainage

How to Grow Calendula from Seed in Pots: A Step-by-Step Guide

Proper watering and drainage are essential for the successful growth of calendula plants in pots. Calendula plants prefer moist soil, but they do not tolerate waterlogged conditions. Here are some tips to ensure that your calendula plants receive the right amount of water and have proper drainage:

1. Watering

Water your calendula plants thoroughly, but avoid overwatering. It is important to keep the soil consistently moist, but not soggy. Check the moisture level of the soil by inserting your finger about an inch into the soil. If it feels dry, it’s time to water. Water the plants at the base, avoiding wetting the leaves to prevent fungal diseases.

During hot summer months, calendula plants may require more frequent watering. Be sure to water in the morning or evening to minimize evaporation and allow the plants to absorb the water effectively.

2. Drainage

How to Grow Calendula from Seed in Pots: A Step-by-Step Guide

Good drainage is crucial for calendula plants. If the soil does not drain well, it can lead to root rot and other issues. Choose a well-draining potting mix that contains perlite or vermiculite to improve drainage.

Ensure that your pots have drainage holes at the bottom to allow excess water to escape. If your pots do not have drainage holes, you can add a layer of gravel or small rocks at the bottom to improve drainage.

Additionally, avoid using saucers or trays under the pots that can collect excess water. Standing water can lead to root rot and other diseases.

Regularly monitor the moisture level of the soil and adjust your watering schedule accordingly. With proper watering and drainage, your calendula plants will thrive and reward you with beautiful blooms.

Providing Adequate Sunlight

Calendula plants thrive in full sunlight, so it is important to provide them with adequate exposure to the sun. When growing calendula from seed in pots, choose a location that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight each day. This will ensure that the plants receive the necessary light to grow and bloom.

It is also important to position the pots in a sunny spot that is sheltered from strong winds. Calendula plants can be delicate and may become damaged if exposed to strong gusts of wind. Placing the pots in a sheltered location will help protect the plants and ensure they receive consistent sunlight.

Choosing the Right Location

When selecting a location for your calendula pots, consider the direction of the sun and the amount of shade in the area. Calendula plants prefer morning sun and afternoon shade, so try to find a spot that provides this balance. If you live in a particularly hot climate, some afternoon shade may be beneficial to prevent the plants from overheating.

Additionally, make sure the location has good drainage to prevent waterlogged soil. Calendula plants do not tolerate wet feet and may develop root rot if the soil remains consistently moist. Ensure that the pots have drainage holes and use a well-draining potting mix to promote healthy root growth.

Supplementing with Artificial Light

If you do not have access to a sunny outdoor space, or if you live in an area with limited sunlight, you can supplement with artificial light. Grow lights can be used to provide the necessary light spectrum for calendula plants to grow and bloom. Position the lights above the pots and adjust the height as the plants grow to ensure they receive adequate light.

When using artificial light, it is important to mimic the natural light cycle. Calendula plants require around 12-14 hours of light each day to thrive. Use a timer to ensure the lights are turned on and off at the appropriate times, providing the plants with a consistent light schedule.

By providing adequate sunlight, either through natural or artificial means, you can ensure that your calendula plants grow strong and healthy, producing an abundance of vibrant blooms.

Supporting the Plants

As your calendula plants grow, it’s important to provide them with proper support to ensure they stay healthy and upright. This is especially important if you are growing them in pots, as they may not have the natural support of the ground.


One way to support your calendula plants is by staking them. This involves inserting a stake into the pot next to the plant and tying the stem to the stake with a soft string or plant tie. Staking helps prevent the plants from bending or breaking under their own weight or from strong winds.

Cage or Trellis

If you have multiple calendula plants in a pot, you may consider using a cage or trellis to support them. This provides a more structured support system and helps keep the plants upright. Simply place the cage or trellis in the pot and gently guide the plants to grow around it.

Remember to check the ties or supports regularly and adjust them as needed to accommodate the growing plants. Be careful not to tie the stems too tightly, as this can restrict their growth and cause damage.

Supporting your calendula plants not only keeps them looking tidy but also helps promote better air circulation and reduces the risk of disease. By providing the necessary support, you can enjoy healthy and vibrant calendula blooms throughout the growing season.

Pruning and Deadheading

Pruning and deadheading are important tasks when growing calendula in pots. Pruning helps to maintain the plant’s shape and size, while deadheading promotes continuous blooming.

When pruning calendula, use clean and sharp pruning shears to remove any dead, damaged, or diseased stems. Cut the stems back to a healthy bud or node to encourage new growth. Pruning can also help to prevent the plant from becoming too leggy or sprawling.

Deadheading is the process of removing spent flowers from the plant. This not only improves the plant’s appearance but also prevents the formation of seeds, which can inhibit further blooming. To deadhead calendula, simply pinch or snip off the faded flowers just above a set of leaves or buds.

Regular pruning and deadheading throughout the growing season will help to keep your calendula plants looking their best and encourage a longer blooming period. It is recommended to prune and deadhead calendula every few weeks or as needed.

Note: Be sure to dispose of any pruned or deadheaded plant material properly to prevent the spread of diseases or pests.

Protecting from Pests and Diseases

When growing calendula from seed in pots, it’s important to protect your plants from pests and diseases. Here are some tips to keep your calendula healthy and thriving:

  • Inspect regularly: Regularly inspect your calendula plants for any signs of pests or diseases. Look for yellowing leaves, spots, or wilting, which could be indicators of a problem.
  • Remove affected plants: If you notice any plants that are showing signs of pests or diseases, remove them immediately to prevent the spread to other plants.
  • Use organic pest control: Instead of using chemical pesticides, opt for organic pest control methods. This can include using insecticidal soap, neem oil, or introducing beneficial insects like ladybugs or lacewings.
  • Practice good sanitation: Keep your growing area clean and free of debris, as this can attract pests and diseases. Remove any fallen leaves or dead plant material promptly.
  • Avoid overwatering: Calendula plants are susceptible to root rot, so be careful not to overwater them. Allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings.
  • Rotate crops: If you’re growing calendula in pots year after year, it’s a good idea to rotate your crops. This helps prevent the buildup of pests and diseases in the soil.

By following these tips, you can protect your calendula plants from pests and diseases, ensuring they grow and bloom beautifully.

Harvesting Calendula

Once your calendula plants have bloomed and the flowers are fully open, it is time to harvest them. Harvesting calendula is a simple process that can be done by hand.

Start by selecting flowers that are fully open and vibrant in color. Gently grasp the stem just below the flower head and pull it off the plant. Avoid picking flowers that are wilted or discolored.

After harvesting the flowers, you can use them fresh or dry them for later use. To dry the flowers, tie them in small bunches and hang them upside down in a cool, dark place with good air circulation. Allow the flowers to dry completely, which can take up to two weeks.

Once the flowers are dry, gently remove the petals from the flower heads. Store the petals in an airtight container away from direct sunlight. They can be used in a variety of ways, such as making herbal teas, infused oils, or adding them to bath salts.

Remember to always label your harvested calendula to keep track of the date and any specific details about the flowers. This will help you determine the potency and freshness of your harvested calendula when using it in various applications.

Harvesting calendula is a rewarding process that allows you to enjoy the beauty and benefits of this versatile plant. By following these simple steps, you can ensure a successful harvest and make the most of your calendula plants.

Uses of Calendula

Calendula, also known as marigold, is a versatile plant that has been used for centuries for its medicinal and culinary properties. Here are some of the common uses of calendula:

1. Medicinal Uses

Calendula is known for its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties, making it a popular ingredient in various skincare products. It can help soothe skin irritations, heal wounds, and reduce inflammation. Calendula oil or ointment can be applied topically to treat cuts, burns, and insect bites.

Additionally, calendula has been used in traditional medicine to treat digestive issues, such as ulcers and gastritis. It can also be used as a natural remedy for menstrual cramps and to promote overall menstrual health.

2. Culinary Uses

Calendula flowers are edible and can be used in cooking to add color and flavor to various dishes. The petals can be sprinkled over salads, soups, and desserts to give them a vibrant touch. They have a slightly tangy and peppery taste, similar to saffron.

Calendula can also be used to make herbal teas, infusions, and tinctures. These can be consumed for their potential health benefits, including boosting the immune system and improving digestion.

Furthermore, calendula has been used in the production of natural dyes. The flowers can be boiled to extract a yellow or orange pigment, which can be used to dye fabrics, yarns, and even Easter eggs.

In conclusion, calendula is a versatile plant with various uses in medicine, cooking, and crafts. Its healing properties and vibrant flowers make it a valuable addition to any garden or herbal remedy collection.

Tips and Tricks

Here are some tips and tricks to help you successfully grow calendula from seed in pots:

1. Choose the right pot

When growing calendula from seed, it’s important to choose the right pot. Opt for a pot that is at least 6 inches deep and has drainage holes at the bottom. This will ensure that the soil doesn’t become waterlogged and the roots have room to grow.

2. Start seeds indoors

For best results, start calendula seeds indoors about 6-8 weeks before the last frost date. Use a seed starting mix and sow the seeds about 1/4 inch deep. Keep the soil moist and place the pots in a warm location with plenty of sunlight.

3. Transplant carefully

Once the seedlings have grown a few inches tall and the danger of frost has passed, it’s time to transplant them into larger pots or into the garden. Be sure to handle the seedlings gently to avoid damaging the roots. Plant them at the same depth as they were in the original pots.

4. Provide ample sunlight

Calendula plants thrive in full sun, so be sure to place your pots in a location that receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight each day. If you’re growing them indoors, consider using grow lights to provide the necessary light.

5. Water regularly

Keep the soil consistently moist, but not waterlogged. Water the plants regularly, especially during dry spells or hot weather. Avoid overhead watering, as this can lead to fungal diseases. Instead, water at the base of the plants to keep the leaves dry.

6. Deadhead regularly

To encourage continuous blooming, deadhead the spent flowers regularly. This will prevent the plant from going to seed and promote the production of new flowers. Simply pinch off the faded flowers at the base of the stem.

By following these tips and tricks, you can enjoy a beautiful display of calendula flowers in your pots throughout the growing season.

Video:Growing Calendula from Seed in Pots

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