Huacatay (Tagetes minuta)



Huacatay (Tagetes minuta)is a tall and upright flowering plant in the family Asteraceae. It is also known as Mexican Marigold, Mint Marigold, Wild Marigold, or Stinking Roger. Tagetes minuta is native to the southern half of South America, and has been introduced around the world including Europe, Asia, and Africa. It is used as a culinary herb in Peru, Ecuador, and parts of Chile and Bolivia, where it is known as huacatay (Quechua term).

Huacatay plant, 0.6-1.2 m tall, bears tiny yellow flowers. Tea made from the plant is remedy for the colds, respiratory inflammations and stomach problems. The dried leaves is used as a seasoning. Huacatay paste is used to make the popular Peruvian potato dish called ocopa. The taste and odor of fresh huacatay is like a mixture of sweet basil, tarragon, mint and citrus.

Tagetes minuta prefers full sun, and either dry or wet soil. It has little toleration for frost and requires a long growing period.

Stinking Roger (Tagetes minuta) an introduced weed near Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia.Stinking Roger (Tagetes minuta) an introduced weed near Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia.
Author: Arthur Chapman (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic)

Leaves of Stinking Roger (Tagetes minuta)Leaves of Stinking Roger (Tagetes minuta)
Author: Arthur Chapman (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic)

Flowers of Stinking Roger (Tagetes minuta)Flowers of Stinking Roger (Tagetes minuta)
Author: Arthur Chapman (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic)

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