Written by: Dr. Loreen Dawson, ND
Calendula is one of the most cheerful plants in the garden. It lines the path to the front door, and blooms year round with bright orange flowers. In Old England, calendula flowers were added to the soup in the winter to bring in a little sunshine. They both cheer up the spirit, and help reduce colds and flu. Today, we are more likely to add them to salads for their beautiful colour.
Calendula is one of the most versatile plants in the garden. It can be used both topically and internally to stimulate wound healing and reduce infection. It stimulates blood circulation, which explains how it can both reduce fever and lessen menstrual cramps. Calendula also stimulates circulation of the lymph, so works well for swollen glands. It was traditionally used in the early stages of measles and chicken pox to rapidly clear the rash. It is excellent when taken internally to address a whole range of skin problems. The bright yellow/orange colour reminds us that calendula can also be used to gently stimulate the liver. Calendula is an easy to grow flower that is a wonderful addition to any garden.