Calendula Officinalis

AKA Calendula. Herbal Sunshine. Pot Marigold. Poor Man’s Saffron. Jin Zhan Ju . צִיפּּוֹרְנֵי חֲתּוּל/tzipornei chatul – cat’s claw

Family | Asteraceae

Where it grows | Native to Europe. Now it is cultivated worldwide. The best time to harvest the flowers is in the summer.

Herbal Actions | Diaphoretic, Antiseptic, Bacteriostatic, Hemostatic, Emollient, Emmenagogue, Stimulant, Anti-inflammatory, Astringent, Antiviral

Body Systems | Immune, Cardiovascular, Respiratory and Digestive Systems

Parts Used | Dried flower

Energetics |Warming, Drying, Pungent

Medicinal Uses |

Immune Tonic: prevents sickness in the winter

Wound remedy: prevents the appearance of puss and inflammation; if puss has formed, it keeps the inflammation from spreading

Lymphatic remedy used for swollen glands

Digestion: Soothes digestive mucosa and reduces inflammation

Reproductive: moistens the vaginal wall

Great for rashes, dry skin or chapping

Also used for dental hygiene as in a mouthwash

Contraindications | Avoid use during early pregnancy

Preparation Methods | Flowers are collected throughout the year and are dried. Fresh flowers produce too watery of an extract. You can eat the flowers, make a tincture, add to a tea or make an infused oil.

Dosing Guidelines | Tincture: 10-15 drops up to 4 X per day

For folks with acute conditions, 1 clove 3 X per day is recommended or up to three 500-600 mg capsules a day (it is not recommended to use the odorless variety)

Tincture; 10-20 drops several times per day

Jewish take on it | There are no direct references to Calendula in the Torah or Talmud. However, Calendula is a plant that grows all throughout the land of Israel and was used by the Rambam in many of his remedies. Known as an herb that can heal wounds, both internal and external, perhaps it could be a part of a tea blend and ceremony for peoples who struggle with one another in an effort to mend what has been broken and make peace. As a flower that is known to bring brightness and light in the dark, it is no coincidence that it grows all over the Middle East.

References | Medical Herbalism, David Hoffmann; Herbal Therapy and Supplements by Merrily A. Kuhn and David Winston; The Earthwise Herbal by Matthew Wood