Calendula has a the place of honour in a herbal first-aid kit.
It is anti-infective, anti-inflammatory, and its astringency helps to seal and protect wounds.
Used an an infusion or made into a cream, it helps with any skin inflammation, cuts, bruises, burns, scalds and insect bites. The antiseptic and astringent qualities of calendula are of benefit to the immune system and help the body fight against infection such as flu and the herpes virus.
Calendula reduces lymphatic congestion and swollen lymph glands. It is antibacterial, and is one of the best plants for treating fungal infections, including enteritis, dysentry, worms and amebae, and for viral hepatitis. In hot fusions calendula stimulates the circulation and promotes perspiration, helping the body to deal with toxins and eruptions such as measles and chickenpox. Calendula has an affinity for the female reproductive system, regulating menstruation and relieving menstrual cramps. Its estrogenic effect helps at menopause and reduces breast congestion. Its astringent properties help reduce excessive bleeding and uterine congestion. It has a reputation for treating tumours and cysts. During childbirth it promotes contractions and delivery of the placenta.
Taken internally, Calendula helps to heal mouth and stomach ulcers and sore throats, as well as easing indigestion. It works well with Althae Symphytum, Filipendula and Glycyrrhiza, among others. Calendula is the first herb of whenever there is a problem with candida (thrush), whether viral vaginal. It discourages and eventually drives out the infections, as well as toning and cleansing the tissues, so that candida can no longer easily gain a foothold. If the condition is chronic you may need to keep taking calendula for a few months. Use it with Thymus (thyme), Commiphora molmol (myrrh) or Melalceuca (ti-tree) oil (Ufor external use only!) to enhance the effects.
Calendula should not be used internally during pregnancy
The petals were once used to colour cheese and butter yellow.
Calendula is a very common garden flower. Sow seeds in April. It will the re-seed every year. just looking at the clear orange flowers is said to be enough to lighten the spirits.