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    Tammy Allen, RHN
  • on Sep 18, 2019 |

This sunny yellow-orange flower—also called pot marigold or English marigold— is found in gardens all over the world. Calendula should not be confused with other marigolds of the tagetes genus: these ornamental varieties have no medicinal value and won’t do anything for you but look good. Calendula belongs to the same family (Asteraceae) as daisies, chrysanthemums, and ragweed. 

The plant’s name is related to Latin word calens, meaning the first day of the month. The flower has been known since Roman times, and was rumoured to bloom on the first of each month. Christians called it “marygold” or “marybud” because it bloomed at festivals celebrating the Virgin Mary. 

Calendula officinalis is one of the most important plants in your medicinal garden. The dried petals make a miracle anti-inflammatory agent and wound healer. It can be used for leg ulcers and has been shown to help wounds heal faster and suppress minor infections. 

It is speculated that calendula works by increasing blood flow to the affected area, which helps new tissue grow faster. In fact, it is such a powerful healing agent that you should avoid putting calendula cream on a deep wound, since it may induce the top skin layer to heal before the deeper layer has a chance to close, causing a pocket to form. 

There is some evidence that calendula can reduce or prevent dermatitis and skin inflammation in breast cancer patients while they undergo radiation therapy. It is also effectively used for chronic nosebleeds, varicose veins, hemorrhoids, and even in dilute solution for conjunctivitis (inflammation of whites of the eye). 

One of the many important ingredients in calendula may be its high concentration of flavonoids, a class of antioxidants.* + Calendula is also a natural weapon against harmful bacteria, fungi, and viruses