The flower petals of the calendula plant (Calendula officinalis), or pot marigold, have been used for medicinal purposes since at least the 12th century. Calendula has high amounts of flavonoids, plant-based antioxidants that protect cells from being damaged by unstable molecules called free radicals. Calendula is believed by some to have properties that fight inflammation, viruses, and bacteria. The dried petals of the calendula plant are used by herbalists in tinctures, ointments, and washes to treat burns, bruises, and cuts.
Calendula is also a lovely and useful plant in the garden! Calendula repels many common garden pests including aphids, eelworms, asparagus beetles, and tomato hornworms, and is a wonderful companion plant for potatoes, beans, and lettuce.
A lesser known role for Calendula petals in a historical context is as a vibrant dye for fabrics. The brightly colored petals can be used to color butter, cheese, custards, sauces or in a variety of other food contexts.
Do not confuse this plant with the more common garden Marigold, French Marigold, or Tagetes.
Note: Please see your healthpractitioner or herbalist prior to taking internally. Can cause sedation. Do not use while operating machinery or driving.
Pregnancy/Lactation: Please do not use Calendula while pregnant or nursing.
I ordered .5 lb of this calendula, and was surprised at how much was in the bag! A recipe I had for homemade healing salve called for this herb, so this was my first experience with it. In conjunction with some other healing herbs, the result was great. It was very satisfying learning how to make something so useful. Herbs are so fun to experiment with. I will definitely buy my calendula from Beeyoutiful again when this bag runs out. (Which may be a VERY long time from now!)