do marigolds deter aphids

Do Marigolds Deter Aphids? (Answered)

Yes, marigolds can deter aphids. Marigolds are known for their ability to repel various pests, including aphids. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind marigolds’ effectiveness in deterring aphids and provide you with some tips on how to utilize marigolds in your garden to keep aphids at bay.

Why are Aphids a Problem?

Aphids are small, soft-bodied insects that feed on the sap of plants. They reproduce rapidly and can quickly infest your garden, causing damage to your plants. Aphids can weaken plants, stunt their growth, and transmit diseases. Therefore, it is crucial to control aphid populations to maintain the health and vitality of your garden.

How Do Marigolds Deter Aphids?

Marigolds contain natural compounds that repel aphids and other pests. The primary compound responsible for this repellent effect is called limonene, which is found in the flowers and leaves of marigold plants. Limonene has a strong citrus-like scent that aphids find unpleasant, causing them to avoid marigolds.

Additionally, marigolds emit a chemical called alpha-terthienyl, which is toxic to many insects, including aphids. This chemical acts as a natural insecticide, further deterring aphids from infesting your plants.

Types of Marigolds That Deter Aphids

While all marigolds have some level of aphid-repelling properties, certain varieties are particularly effective. Here are a few marigold types that are known to deter aphids:

Marigold VarietyDescription
Tagetes erecta (African marigold)These marigolds have large, showy flowers and a strong scent that repels aphids.
Tagetes patula (French marigold)French marigolds produce a chemical that is toxic to aphids, making them an excellent choice for aphid control.
Tagetes tenuifolia (Signet marigold)Signet marigolds have finely divided leaves and small, edible flowers. They release a strong scent that repels aphids.

How to Use Marigolds to Deter Aphids

Here are some tips on how to effectively use marigolds to deter aphids in your garden:

1. Plant Marigolds as Companion Plants

Intercropping marigolds with other susceptible plants can help deter aphids. The strong scent and chemical compounds released by marigolds act as a natural barrier, preventing aphids from infesting nearby plants. Consider planting marigolds alongside vegetables, herbs, or flowers that are prone to aphid attacks.

2. Create a Marigold Border

Planting a border of marigolds around your garden or specific plant beds can create a protective barrier against aphids. This method works particularly well for repelling aphids that crawl along the ground to reach your plants.

3. Use Marigold Extracts or Sprays

Marigold extracts or sprays can be used as a natural insecticide to deter aphids. You can make your own spray by steeping marigold flowers in water and then straining the liquid. Spray this solution on your plants to repel aphids. Alternatively, you can find commercially available marigold-based insecticides.

4. Regularly Monitor and Remove Aphids

While marigolds can deter aphids, it is essential to regularly monitor your plants for any signs of aphid infestation. If you spot aphids, manually remove them by spraying a strong stream of water on the affected plants or by using insecticidal soap. Combining these methods with marigold planting will provide better control over aphid populations.


In conclusion, marigolds are effective in deterring aphids due to their natural compounds, such as limonene and alpha-terthienyl, which repel and even harm these pests. By incorporating marigolds into your garden as companion plants, borders, or using marigold-based sprays, you can significantly reduce aphid infestations and protect the health of your plants. Remember to regularly monitor your garden and take necessary actions to control aphids if they appear. Happy gardening!

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