Mexican Mint Marigold

Tagetes lemmonii

Also called : rudilla, Lemmons marigold, Copper Canyon Daisy, Mountain Marigold, Mexican Marigold, Passionfruit Marigold, Tree Marigold, Tangerine Marigold, Mount Lemmon Marigold, Texas tarragon

T.lucida (pericón) is also known by the moniker Mexican Mint Marigold. (See Post : Pericón. Tagetes lucida)

Flowers of T.lemmonii

T.lemmonii is native to the states of Sonora and Sinaloa in north-western Mexico as well as southern Arizona in the Estados Unidos. It was originally collected in south-eastern Arizona in the late 1800s by self-taught field botanists, the Lemmons, a husband and wife collecting team. The Lemmons were responsible for numerous botanical finds mostly in the Sierra Nevada foothills.

The aroma of this plant has been likened to the scent of marigold mixed with lemon and mint and, like coriander, its taste is somewhat polarising with some finding it agreeable whilst others find the smell quite displeasing (and deer seem to completely leave this plant alone).

Leaves of T.lemmonii

The leaves of this plant bear a striking resemblance to another variety of scented marigold from the lands of the Inca, Huacatay (T.minuta).(1)

  1. See Post Huacatay Tagetes minuta
Leaves of Tagetes minuta

This plant can be used in the garden as a companion plant to the solanacea (1) species to help prevent root nematodes.

  1. tomato, eggplant, chile pepper, tobacco, and potato.

Medicinal Use.

This plant is indicated for gastric irritation and pain (particularly that caused by gas), it has mild analgesic and anti-inflammatory actions which can aid with gastritis, pre-ulcerous conditions and pain caused by gas build up in the gastro-intestinal tract. A hot infusion of the plant can be taken as a sudorific (1) to help break a fever. An oil or salve can be made from the dried flowers to help expedite the healing of poorly healing cuts and scrapes (Kane 2006). Kane has noted that extracts of this plant exhibit an interesting effect on the nervous system and corresponding emotional outlook. A short time after taking the fresh plant tincture a calming quality can be felt along with a lightness of mind and sometimes mild giddiness (2) is felt and that the plant may be useful during times of “fixated emotional morbidity”


The flowering stems of T. lemmonii contain ethyl-2-methyl butyrate (0.3%), α-phellandrene (0.2%), (E)-β-ocimene (2.1%), dihydrotagetone (42.5%), alloocimene (2.8%), (Z)-tagetone (0.04%), (E)-tagetone (16.1%), β-caryophyllene (0.2%), (Z)-tagetenone (3.9%), (E)-tagetenone (14.2%), and germacrene D (0.5%)

tagetone, dihydrotagetone and (Z)-ocimenone


  • Fresh Plant Tincture : 30-60 drops, 3-4 x daily
  • Leaf Infusion : 4-8oz (1/4-1/2 cup : 120-240ml) 3-4 x daily
  1. (or diaphoretic) – causes sweating
  2. It is not noted if giddiness refers to vertigo/dizziness or a silly, happy, excited feeling (light-hearted, frivolous)

  • Kane, CW : Herbal Medicine of the American Southwest : 2006 : Lincoln Town Press : ISBN 0-977133-0-3
  • Mir, Rayees & Abass, Mohammad & Agarwal, Rajiv. (2019). Marigold: From Mandap to Medicine and from Ornamentation to Remediation. American Journal of Plant Sciences. 10. 309-338. 10.4236/ajps.2019.102024.
  • Serrato-Cruz, M. A., J. S. Barajas-Pérez, y F. Díaz-Cedillo. 2007. Aceites esenciales del recurso genético Tagetes para el control de insectos, nematodos, ácaros y hongos. In: Substancias Naturalescontra Plagas. Agricultura Sostenible. López-Olguín, J. F., A. Aragón-García, C. Rodríguez-Hernández,M. Vázquez-García (eds.). Colegio de Postgraduados, México.
  • Soule, J.A. 1993. A potential new herbal product from a South American species of Tagetes. In: J. Janick, and J. Simon (eds.). New Crops. Wiley, New York. USA.
  • Tucker, A. O., & Maciarello, M. J. (1996). Volatile Leaf Oil of Tagetes lemmonii Gray. Journal of Essential Oil Research, 8(4), 417–418. doi:10.1080/10412905.1996.9700652
  • Verdeguer-Sancho M. 2011. Fitotoxicidad de aceites esenciales y extractos acuosos de plantas mediterráneas para el control de arvenses. Tesis doctoral. Universidad de Valencia, España. (Consulta octubre 2013).

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