Tagetes minuta has been eaten in various forms since pre-contact times. Dried leaves may be used as a seasoning and huacatay paste is used to make the popular Peruvian potato dish called ocopa. An herbal tea can be brewed from the leaves. An extraction of the plant, “Marigold oil”, is used in the perfume, tobacco, and soft drink industry.
In addition to food, the plant can be used to produce dye and as a green manure crop for biomass and a bio-fumigant for control of selected species of nematodes.