How To Save Overwatered Marigold Plants (if Possible)

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Marigolds are hardy annual plants that grow best in moist, well-draining soil and full sun exposure. They are fairly drought tolerant and do better with less water than more. Use the soak and dry watering method to avoid overwatering Marigolds.

In heavy rain and accidental watering, withhold all water until the soil has become mostly dry.

Watering MarigoldPin

This article shares tips to help you save your Marigolds if you have overwatered. Read on to learn more. 

Caring For Overwatered Marigolds

Assess The Damage

If you have overwatered your Marigolds, determine how badly the plants have been damaged.

If the leaves are slightly yellow but not wilted, changing your watering schedule may be all that’s needed to save them. 

Follow these tips to provide correct watering: 

  • To water Marigolds thoroughly in the landscape, run a soaker hose or slow trickle from your garden hose long enough to provide an extensive soaking. If your Marigolds are in a container or pot, allow water to run through the well-draining soil and out the drain holes. Let the excess water run out before putting the container or pot back into a saucer. 
  • Never leave your Marigolds standing in water for an extended period. This will always lead to root rot. 
  • Avoid overhead watering because this will cause fungal infections in the leaves and stems. 
  • Water early in the day to give the water a chance to soak in thoroughly and the plants a chance to dry before nightfall. Do not water at night. 
  • Check the soil frequently to see if it is wet or dry. If the soil is wet, you should withhold water.
  • Wait until the soil is almost dry, then give your plants a thorough watering.

Continue with soak-and-dry watering moving forward, and your Marigolds should recover nicely and continue to do well, as long as the rest of your plant care methods suit the needs of the plants.

Can An Overwatered Marigold Really Be Rescued?

Perhaps! You can certainly give it a try, but it may not be worth the trouble. 

Overwatering may cause your Marigolds to suffer from the following:

  • Crown rot
  • Stem rot
  • Root rot

These are all fungal infections, usually caused by Phytophthora, which very commonly affects Marigolds and thrives in poorly drained soil.

If the damage is the entire leaves and stems, you may be able to rescue your plants by trimming away damaged parts, providing better drainage, and altering your watering habits.

When fungal damage is entirely above the soil level, the foliage of the plants will become dull, yellow, and wilt.

If the fungus has attacked the roots, you will also see stunted plant growth and eventual plant death.

To determine if your plants are affected by root rot, dig a few affected plants up and examine the roots.

They have been infected if they are soft and dark and have brown tips. 

Plants infected with root rot should be removed and disposed of. Put them in the trash, not in your compost heap. These plants cannot recover.

Fortunately, Marigold seeds and seedlings are abundant and inexpensive, so replacing them should be simple. Just be sure to change your care habits in the future to avoid this problem. 

You Can’t Go Wrong With Soak And Dry Watering

Letting your plants go a bit thirsty is probably the most useful skill any gardener can learn.

Far more problems are caused by overwatering than underwatering. If you are underwater, you can always just add water.

If you overwater, there is little you can do but wait and increase drainage and air circulation. Unfortunately, these steps may not be effective. 

Most plants will thrive with a soak and dry watering. Even though some exceptions may prefer slightly moist soil, even these typically do well-using soak and dry.

The more experience you gain in plant care, the more you will develop the knowledge and instincts needed to recognize and provide for the precise needs of your plants. 

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