Scientific: Tagetes lucida
Common: Mexican tarragon, Spanish tarragon, Mexican mint marigold, winter tarragon
Family: Asteraceae
Origin: Woods, hillsides and rocky slopes of Southern Mexico to Guatemala.

Pronounciation: Ta-GE-tes lu-CI-da

Hardiness zones
Sunset
8-10, 12-24
USDA 9 (might freeze) to 11

Landscape Use: Accent shrub, herb garden, or a mixed flower garden.

Form & Character: An easy to grow herbaceous perennial that is upright and open, formal and stiff, tropical.

Growth Habit: Moderately clumping to 4 feet tall with nearly equal spread.

Foliage/Texture: Glossy green foliage, lanceolate, smooth and entire margins, aromatic, anise or licorice; medium fine texture.

Flowers & Fruits: Small, terminal, yellow daisy flowers, fruits inconspicuous.

Seasonal Color: Yellow blooms in winter.

Temperature: Tolerant of desert heat, though one must avoid planting this aromatic shrub in western or reflected exposures. Frost sensitive, damaged by freezes below 28oF.

Light: Full sun

Soil: WELL DRAINED soil it MUST be - no prolonged damp soil conditions. Mexican tarragon generally has a high nutritional requirement, i.e., it's a heavy feeder so lightly fertilizing it every couple of months will be needed for best performance.

Watering: Water nearly daily during hottest times of summer tapering to every 5 to 7 days during winter.

Pruning: Light shearing or tipping to promote tight habit at any time, or can the whole plant to the ground once a year in early spring.

Propagation: By seed - sow in March, needs warmth. Germination usually takes place within 2 weeks. Also propagate by basal cuttings in spring or division.

Disease and pests: None

Additional comments: Mexican tarragon foliage has a heavy fragrance that is offensive to some. Tagetes lucida 'Anisata'(sweet marigold) is a low growing cultivar reaching only 12 inches in height with a spread of 18 inches.

Mexican tarragon is also a plant with much medicinal value.