Lizabeth talks about the poverty that she and the other children are living in. She shares about how there were dirt roads and grassless yards where she lived. The only thing sticking out from the visible miles of dirt were Ms. Lottie's marigolds.
Lizabeth watches Ms. Lottie tend to the marigolds in her yard. Lizabeth doesn't approve of the flowers because she feels that the marigolds don't fit in with the rest of the atmosphere. The marigolds are too pretty for the ugliness of the place.
In a fit of rage, Lizabeth rushes to Ms. Lottie's yard and starts to pull her marigolds out of the ground. She then notices that Ms. Lottie was watching her with a sad and horrified expression on her face. Lizabeth realizes that growing marigolds was Ms. Lottie's way of finding joy. Because of this, Lizabeth says that destroying the marigolds was her last act of childhood.