Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Corn Marigolds

It has been said that "a weed is a plant growing in the wrong place", so these attractive corn marigolds would be considered a weed competing with the crop in this field.

Corn marigolds can be very invasive. Years ago when they were commonplace in cereal crops, the marigold seeds mixed with the harvested grains reducing the value of the crop. The problem was so great that in the 13th century, a law in Scotland stated " if a farmer allows so much as a single plant to produce seed in amongst his crops then he will be fined a sheep.". The poor farmers must have had to work hard to rid their land of this weed.

Today corn marigolds are recognised as being a very beneficial flower for wild-life, in particular for bees and hoverflies.  Far from being fined for growing these brightly coloured daisies we are now able to buy corn marigold seeds to plant in our gardens to encourage wild-life.

Definitely a case of being a weed in one place and valued plant in another.