Calendula - the flower with healing powers

by Metreye

Calendula species have been used traditionally as culinary and medicinal herbs. Used as a tincture, succus or tea, it can heal minor cuts and wounds, nose bleeds, and leg ulcers.

Calendula is the modern version of the Latin word Calendae, meaning "little calendar", or "little clock". Calendula extracts have wound healing, skin soothing and anti inflammatory properties. Used as a gargle, it can cure sore throat and tonsillitis. Calendula succus is used during minor surgical procedures to help heal incisions.

Calendula flowers

Calendula extracts can heal wounds
Calendula extracts can heal wounds

Calendula - the herb

   Calendula is a short lived, aromatic, herbaceous, perrineal plant belonging to the daisy family Asteraceae.

   The flowers of Calendula officinalis contain aromatic glycosides, triterpenes, saponins and a sesquiterpene glucoside, that are responsible for its medicinal properties. The carotenoids flavoxanthin and auraxanthin impart the yellow orange color to its petals.

Medicinal uses of Calendula

Calendula tea can be used for gargles
Calendula tea can be used for gargles

Health benefits of Calendula

   Calendula oil has anti-inflammatory, anti cancer and wound healing properties. Its extracts have an antiseptic effect. In a suspension or tincture form, it is used for treating acne, controlling nose bleeds, curing stasis eczema due to varicose veins and for leg ulcers.

   Calendula ointment is effective in treating radiation dermatitis.

   In addition to healing minor cuts and abrasions, lacerations and skin infections, Calendula salve offers benefits for chapped lips and diaper rash.

   Calendula tea is used as a mouth wash for gum and tooth infections, and as a gargle for sore throat and tonsillitis, or as a sitz bath for hemorrhoids or piles.

Calendula for post surgery wounds

   Calendula succus (made by extracting fresh juice from young flowers and preserving it in a bit of alcohol) or  extract in an aqueous base is applied along with post surgery dressings for rapid healing of incisions.

   Calendula ointments promote wound healing after the stitches have been removed and scabs have formed. It promotes new growth and collagen synthesis, providing a framework that strengthens the incision and hastens repair.

Calendula - a natural wound healing remedy

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Who should avoid using Calendula ?

Calendula is known to cause allergic reactions, so if you have a tendency to develop allergies then avoid oral intake of Calendula. For skin application, do a Patch test applying a small amount of the preparation behind your ear lobe or on the back. Observe the patch for 48 hours for the appearance of redness, induration or development of itching. If the Patch test comes out positive, then you are allergic to the phytochemicals present in Calendula and you should avoid using any Calendula preparations.

   It should also be avoided during pregnancy.

Updated: 03/02/2016, Metreye
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DerdriuMarriner on 05/22/2017

Metreye, Are the allergies by contact, fragrance or ingestion? Calendula also is a beautiful, natural pest repellent so it's tragic if a susceptible gardener cannot grow the beneficial plant. How serious can the signs and symptoms be?

Metreye on 10/24/2014

Thanks for your feedback. Calendula grows really well but it only needs to be protected from harsh weather. Extremely cold and very hot weather is unsuitable for this plant.

cazort on 10/23/2014

I've grown calendula, as an ornamental houseplant (it was very easy to grow from seed), and I've also had it included as an ingredient in herbal teas. Thanks for pointing me to some of its medicinal properties. It looks like there's some good scientific research on it too (just from my glancing over the web) which is exciting.

Metreye on 10/20/2014

Calendula is indeed a wonderful herb. Thanks for stopping by.

VioletteRose on 10/20/2014

Very informative, thank you!

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