Pot marigold or calendula is an adaptable plant that is indigenous to the region of Mediterranean. Since the 1100s, most of the Europeans have planted pot marigold or calendula in their gardens since the calendula plant is such a beautiful flowering plant that can also be used as a food and healing agent. Such properties of the calendula remain through the centuries and even until now.
As a member of the aster family, the calendula is highly differentiated with the common garden marigold which is also boasts bright orange and yellow flowers. It is then the attractive colorful blossoming tops of the calendula that are widely applied as a healing agent.
The name “calendula” is basically taken from the obvious tendency of the plant to bloom according to the calendar. It is for the reason that the calendula plany only blooms wither once a month or at the new moon. Aside from such connotation, there are also some sources that consider the calendula plant by its medieval mark, which is “poor man’s saffron” for the reason that the plant itself lends effervescent color as well as flavor to soups, rice, and chowders. Nowadays, since the calendula has colorful petals, many people used it as a popular addition to salads.
Calendula has several important uses. In fact, it is noted by many resources as the nature’s remedy for many life’s minor accidents such as bruises, scratches, and sunburns. In the early days of calendula, the herb is generally applied to heal wide ranging complaints like cancer, skin infections, as well as fever. However, such uses were left not much important since the modern herbalists just limit their attention primarily on calendula’s topical uses and functions like for treating rashes, sunburns, boils, chapped hands, insect bites, and some other cases of inflamed or ruined skin.
The calendula is widely prepared for such purposes either in the form of lotions or other topical preparations such as ointments, creams, tinctures, and gargles. These forms of calendula preparations are still widely applied in many parts of Europe for the main purpose of slow-healing skin problems. And due to its continuing popularity, many of these topical preparations are now available in heath food stores, pharmacies, and other health outlets in the United States.
Calendula has a primary active compounds that include the triterpenoids which is largely anti-inflammatory, and flavonoids. Its petals are found to have anti-inflammatory, antiseptic qualities, astringent, and may provide immune stimulating actions. This also maintains its reputation as the best solution for burns and wounds.
The calendula is also applied by many people to treat sore throat and other inflammation. In fact, the German health authorities are reported to have used it in a form of tea to treat their throat soreness and inflammation. Aside from that, the calendula tea also has the potential to help control internal inflammation such as ulcers and stomach upset.
However, there is still no exact evidence to support such claim, so taking the calendula as a tea is not really recommended, but taking it in the form of ointments can safely be applied three to four times a day for a quick healing. And if you have certain allergies to ragweed and other members of the aster family, calendula may also not be best for you, for there is a great possibility that you may also be allergic to it.