Effect of nitrogen fertilization and plant density on seed yield and fat content and quality of pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L.) under climatic conditions of Belarus

Cezary Andrzej Kwiatkowski

University of Life Sciences in Lublin

Elżbieta Harasim

University of Life Sciences in Lublin

Alena Yakimovich

Institute of Plant Protection in Priluki, Mira 2, 223011 District Minsk, Belarus


This paper presents the results of a study on the effect of different N fertilization and seeding rates on yield and some quality parameters (of seeds) of pot marigold. A field experiment was carried out during 2014–2016 under soil and climatic conditions of Belarus (Priluki Research Station near Minsk). The experiment included the following factors: N fertilization rate 40, 60, 80, 100 kg ha–1; plant density per 1 m2 (30, 50, 70, 90).  The experiment was set up as a randomized block design in five replicates, with a single plot area of 8.0 m2. The soil in Priluki was characterized by medium nutrient availability (at the level: P = 120–127, K = 164–174, Mg = 59–66 mg kg–1 soil). Regardless of the experimental factors, weather conditions had a significant impact on pot marigold productivity. The year 2016, characterized by an even distribution of rainfall during the growing season and moderate air temperatures, proved to be most beneficial for pot marigold productivity and quality. Hydrological conditions in the other years (2014 and 2015) there was a slight drought. The year 2014 should be considered to be cold, whereas the second year of the study (2015) was moderately warm. Best production effects (seed yield, fat yield) were obtained at rates of 60–80 kg N ha–1. This rate of nitrogen fertilization also modified the fatty acid composition, contributing to a higher content of linoleic acid and calendic acid (∑ α-calendic and β-calendic acids). A nitrogen rate of 100 kg N ha–1 proved to be irrational in terms of the quantity and quality of pot marigold yield. A density of 50–70 plants per 1 m2 resulted in the highest seed and fat yield per unit area. A plant density of 50 plants per 1 m2 resulted in the highest content of C18 unsaturated acids (stearic acid, oleic acid, linoleic acid) in the oil.


pot marigold, N fertilization, row spacing, fat yield, fatty acids, calendic acid

Ahmad, A., Abdin, M.Z. (2000). Interactive effect of Sulphur and nitrogen on the oil and protein contents and on the fatty acid profiles of oil in the seeds of rapeseed (Brassica campestris L.) and mustard (Brassica juncea L. Czern. and Coss.). J. Agron. Crop Sci., 185(1), 49–54. DOI: 10.1046/j.1439-037x.2000.00401.x

Angelini, L.G., Mosheni, E., Colonna, G., Belloni, P., Bonari, E. (1997). Variation in agronomic characteristics and seed oil composition of new oilseed crops in central Italy. Ind. Crop Prod., 6, 313–323.

AOCS – American Oil Chemists Society (1997). Preparation of methyl esters of fatty acids. 52 Official Method Ce 2-66. AOCS Press, Champaign.

Bac, S., Koźmiński, C., Rojek, M. (1993). Agrometeorologia. PWN, Warszawa, 32–33.

Biermann, U., Bornscheuer, U., Meier, M.A.R., Metzger, J.O., Schäfer, H.J. (2011). Oils and fats as renewable raw materials in chemistry. Angew. Chem. In. Ed., 50, 3854–3871. DOI: 10.1002/anie.201002767

Biermann, U., Butte, W., Holtgrefe, R., Feder, W., Metzger, J.O. (2010). Esters of calendula oil and tung oil as reactive diluents for alleyd resins. Eur. J. Lipid Sci. Techol., 112, 103–109. DOI: 10.1002/ejlt.200900142

Chauhan, A., Kumar, V. (2007). Effect of graded levels of nitrogen and VAM on growth and flowering in calendula (Calendula officinalis L.). J. Ornam. Hortic., 10(1), 61–63.

Cromack, H.T.H., Smith, J.M. (1998). Calendula officinalis – production potential and crop agronomy in southern England. Ind. Crops Prod., 7, 223–229. DOI: 10.1016/s0926-6690(97)00052-6

Dordas, C.A. (2010). Variation of physiological determinants of yield in linseed in response to nitrogen fertilization. Ind. Crops Prod., 31(3), 455–465. DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2010.01.008

Dulf, F.V., Pamfil, D., Baciu, A.D., Pintea, A. (2013). Fatty acid composition of lipids in pot marigold (Callendula officinalis L.) seed genotypes. Chem. Cent. J., 7(1), 8. DOI: 10.1186/1752-153X-7-8

Estaji, A., Souri, M.K., Omidbaigi, R. (2011). Evaluation of different levels of nitrogen and flower pruning on milk thistle (Silybum marianum L.) yield and fatty acids. J. Med. Spice Plants, 4, 170–175.

Estaji, A., Souri, M.K., Omidbaigi, R. (2016). Evaluation of nitrogen and flower pruning effects on growth, seed yield and active substances of milk thistle. J. Essent. Oil-Bear. Plants, 19(3), 678–685. DOI: 10.1080/0972060X.2014.981592

Fontes, A.L., Pimentel, L.L., Simoes, C.D., Gomes, A.M., Rodriguez-Alcalá, L.M. (2017). Evidences and perspectives in the utilization of CLNA isomers as bioactive compound in foods. Crit. Rev. Food Sci. Nutr., 57(12), 2611–2622. DOI: 10.1080/10408398.2015.1063478

Forcella, F., Papiernik, S.K., Gesch, R.W. (2012). Postemergence herbicides for calendula. Weed Technol., 26(3), 566–569. DOI: 10.1614/WT-D-11-00133.1

Gesch, R.W. (2013). Growth and yield response of calendula (Calendula officinalis L.) to sowing date in the northern US. Ind. Crops Prod., 45, 248–252. DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2012.11.046

Hreczuch, W., Mittelbach, M., Holas, J., Soucek, J., Bekierz, G. (2000). Produkcja i główne kierunki przemysłowego wykorzystania estrów metylowych kwasów tłuszczowych [Production and main directions of industrial use of fatty acid methyl esters]. Przem. Chem., 79(4), 111–114 [in Polish].

Janssens, R.J., Vernooij, W.P. (2001). Calendula officinalis: a natural source for pharmaceutical, oleochemical and functional compounds. Inform, 12, 468–477.

Jevdović, R., Todorović, G., Kostić, M., Protić, R., Lekić, S., Zivanović, T., Secanski, M. (2013). The effects of location and the application different mineral fertilization on seed yield and quality of pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L.). Turk. J. Field Crops, 18(1), 1–7.

Jiang, Y., Caldwell, C.D., Falk, K.C. (2014). Camelina seed quality in response to applied nitrogen, genotype and environment. Can. J. Plant Sci., 94(5), 971–980. DOI: 10.4141/cjps2013-396

Jiang, Y., Caldwel, C.D., Falk, K.C., Lada, R.R., MacDonald, D. (2013). Camelina yield and quality response to combined nitrogen and sulfur. Agron. J., 105, 1847–1852. DOI: 10.2134/agronj2013.0240

Johnson, J.M., Gesch, R.W. (2013). Calendula and camelina response to nitrogen fertility. Ind. Crops Prod., 43, 684–691. DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2012.07.056

Joly, R., Forcella, F., Peterson, D., Eklund, J. (2013). Planting depth for oilseed calendula. Ind. Crops Prod., 42, 133–136. DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2012.05.016

Kobori, M., Ohnishi-Kameyama, M., Akimoto, Y., Yukizaki, C., Yoshidas, M. (2008). Alpha-eleostearic acid and its dihydroxy derivative are major apoptosis-inducting components of bitter gourd. J. Agric. Food Chem., 56(22), 10515–10520. DOI: 10.1021/jf8020877

Kohno, H., Suzuki, R., Yasui, Y., Hosokawa, M., Mijashita, K., Tanaka, T. (2004). Pomegranate seed oil rich in conjugated linolenic acid suppresses chemically induced colon carcinogenesis in rats. Cancer Sci., 95, 481–486. DOI: 10.1111/j.1349-7006.2004.tb03236.x

Król, B. (2011). Yield and the chemical composition of flower heads of pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L. cv. Orange King) depending on nitrogen fertilization. Acta Sci. Pol. Hortorum Cultus, 10(2), 235–243.

Król, B. (2016). Effect of potassium fertilization on yield, content and fat quality of pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L.) seeds. Polish J. Agron., 27, 64–70. DOI: 10.26114/pja.iung.312.2016.27.08

Król, B. (2017a). Influence of nitrogen fertilization on the seed yield and the content and quality of fat in pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L.) cultivars. Agron. Sci., 72(3), 85–98. DOI: 10.24326/as.2017.3.7

Król, B. (2017b). Azot i siarka jako czynniki kształtujące plon nasion oraz zawartość i jakość tłuszczu nagietka lekarskiego – potencjalnego surowca olejarskiego [Nitrogen and sulphur as determinants of the seed yield, content and quality of fat in pot marigold – a potential oil source]. Ann. UMSC, sec E, 72(2), 29–38 [in Polish]. DOI: 10.24326/as.2017.2.3

Król, B. (2017c). Plon i jakość nasion nagietka lekarskiego (Calendula officinalis L.) w zależności od zagęszczenia roślin w łanie [Yield and quality of pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L.) seeds depending on plant density in the field]. Agron. Sci., 72(3), 11–25 [in Polish]. DOI: 10.24326/as.2017.3.2

Król, B., Paszko, T. (2017). Harvest date as a factor affecting crop yield, oil content and fatty acid composition of the seeds of calendula (Calendula officinalis L.) cultivars. Ind. Crops Prod., 97, 242–251. DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2016.12.029

Król, B., Paszko, T., Król, A. (2016). Conjugated linolenic acid content in seeds of some pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L.) cultivars grown in Poland. Farmacia, 64, 6, 881–886.

Li, Q., Wang, H., Ye, S.H., Xiao, S., Xie, Y.P., Liu, X., Wang, J.H. (2013). Induction of apoptosis and inhibition of invasion in choriocarcinoma JEG-3 cells by α-calendic acid and β-calendic acid. Prostaglandins Leokot. Essent. Fat. Acids, 89, 367–376. DOI: 10.1016/j.plefa.2013.06.007

Martin, R.J., Deo, B. (2000). Effect of plant population on calendula (Calendula officinalis L.) flower production. New Zeland J. Crop Hortic. Sci., 28, 37–44. DOI: 10.1080/01140671.2000.9514120

Metzger, J.O., Bornscheuer, U. (2006). Lipids as renewable resources: current state of chemical and biotechnological conversion and diversification. Appl. Microbiol. Biotechnol., 71, 13–22. DOI: 10.1007/s00253-006-0335-4

Mili, R., Sable, A.S. (2003). Effect of planting density and nitrogen levels on growth and flower production of calendula (Calendula officinalis L.). Indian J. Hortic., 60(4), 343–345.

Mulley, B.P., Khadabadi, S.S., Banarase, N.B. (2009). Phytochemical constituents and pharmacological activities of Calendula officinalis Linn (Asteraceae). Trop. J. Pharm. Res., 8, 455–465. DOI: 10.4314/tjpr.v8i5.48090

Ruiz de Clavijo, E. (2005). The reproductive strategies of the heterocarpic annual Calendula arvensis (Asteraceae). Acta Oecol., 28, 119–126. DOI: 10.1016/j.actao.2005.03.004

Saha, S.S., Ghosh, M. (2011). Antioxidant effect of vegetable oils containing conjugated linolenic acid isomers against induced tissue lipid peroxidation and inflammation in rat model. Chem. Biol. Interact., 190, 109–120. DOI: 10.1016/j.cbi.2011.02.030

Shakib, A., Nejad, A.R., Khalighi, A.H.M. (2010). Changes in seed and oil yield of Calendula officinalis L. as affected by different levels of nitrogen and plant density. Res. Crops, 11(3), 728–732.

Seghatoleslami, M.J., Mousavi, G.R. (2009). The effect of sowing date and plant density on seed flower yield of pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L.). Acta Hortic., 826, 371–376. DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2009.826.52

Souri, M.K., Hatamian, M. (2019). Aminochelates in plant nutrition; a review. J. Plant Nutr., 42(1), 67–78. DOI: 10.1080/01904167.2018.1549671

Souri, M.K., Naiji, M., Kianmehr, M.H. (2019). Nitrogen release dynamics of a slow released urea pellet and its effect on growth, yield and nutrient uptake of sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum L.). J. Plant Nutr., 42(6), 604–614. DOI: 10.1080/01904167.2019.1568460

Szwejkowska, B., Bielski, S. (2012). Effect of nitrogen and magnesium fertilization on the development and yields of pot marigold (Calendula officinalis L.). Acta Sci. Pol. Hortorum Cultus, 11(2), 141–148.

Wilen, R.W., Barl, B., Slinkard, A.E., Bandara, M.S. (2004). Feasibility of cultivation calendula as a dual purpose industrial oilseed and medicinal crop. Acta Hortic., 629, 199–206. DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2004.629.26

Yasui, Y., Hosokawa, M., Kohno, H., Tanaka, T., Miyashita, K. (2006). Troglitazone and 9cis, 11trans, 13trans-inducting effects on different colon cancer cel lines. Chemotherapy, 52, 220–225. DOI: 10.1159/000094865

Yuan, G.F., Chen, X.E., Li, D. (2014). Conjugated linolenic acids and their bioactivities: a review. Food Funct., 5(7), 1360–1368. DOI: 10.1039/c4fo00037d

Zanetti, F., Monti, A., Berti, M.T. (2013). Challenges and opportunities for new industrial oilseed crops in EU-27, A review. Ind. Crops Prod., 50, 580–595. DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2013.08.030



Cezary Andrzej Kwiatkowski 
University of Life Sciences in Lublin http://orcid.org/0000-0001-5759-8320
Elżbieta Harasim 
University of Life Sciences in Lublin
Alena Yakimovich 
Institute of Plant Protection in Priluki, Mira 2, 223011 District Minsk, Belarus



Articles are made available under the conditions CC BY 4.0 (until 2020 under the conditions CC BY-NC-ND 4.0).
Submission of the paper implies that it has not been published previously, that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere.

The author signs a statement of the originality of the work, the contribution of individuals, and source of funding.


Most read articles by the same author(s)