Tagetes is a genus of annual and perennial, mostly herbaceous plants in the sunflower family [Asteraceae or Compositae]. The genus is native to North and South America, but some species have become naturalized around the world.
Tagetes species vary in size from 0.1 to 2.2 m tall. Most species have pinnate green leaves. Blooms naturally occur in golden, orange, yellow, and white colors, often with maroon highlights. Floral heads are typically 1 to 4–6 cm diameter, generally with both ray florets and disc florets. In horticulture, they tend to be planted as annuals, although the perennial species are gaining popularity.
The common name in English, marigold, is derived from Mary’s gold, a name first applied to a similar plant native to Europe, Calendula officinalis.