Common Name: Marigold, Pot marigold
Calendula’s beautiful yellowy orange flowers that open when the sun rises and close when the sun sets, have a naturally sunny disposition and brighten our surroundings. The flowers used to be a common ingredient in soups and stews in the cold winter months for this reason. They were thought to promote a sunny disposition and good health in the colder months. Carotenoids give it its colour and what made it a favourite plant for dyeing fabrics and colouring cheese in medieval Europe. It was said that picking the flowers under the noon day sun will strengthen and comfort the heart. With such a wide variety of actions, it's a welcoming herb in your garden, blooming from spring to late fall. It will keep blooming especially if you pick the flowers regularly.
Parts Used: Yellow petals, flower buds
Constituents: Saponins, flavonoids, salicylic acid, triterpenes, mucilage, carotenoids, resin.
Actions: Anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, astringent, vulnerary, lymphagogue, hemostatic, diaphoretic, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, anti-viral, cholagogue, emmenagogue
Calendula is a herb that has a variety of actions, which makes it a wonderful addition to both internal and external preparations. It may safely be used wherever there is an inflammation on the skin. A powerful vulnerary, it helps to heal wounds with its anti-inflammatory and hemostatic actions, by promoting cell repair and growth.
Topical: It is a common ingredient in infused oils, salves, balms, and creams. Topically, Calendula can be used to treat bruises, wounds, burns, sores, sunburns, infections, rashes, ulcers, itching, and scarring. It is a safe herb for babies and toddlers alike because of its potent and gentle properties. It is one of the more popular herbs in treating cradle cap, diaper rash, and other skin irritations.
Internal: It can be eaten fresh, and makes a great addition to a salad, soup, or even decoratively on cakes and desserts! The flowers can be dried and used year round. They can be brewed into a tea to aid in digestive complaints as well as to help cleanse and nourish the lymphatic system. This herb works well with other lymph cleansers such as burdock root, red clover, cleavers, and chickweed. Lymph cleansers are particularly helpful in addressing skin conditions from the inside out. The lymphatic and immune system work closely together and thus the skin sometimes represents issues going on internally because that is one way in which the body detoxifies - through our largest organ, the skin.