Calendula: Not Just a Pretty Face


Mid February – definitely a great time of the year to put the finishing touches on my garden plan.  I tend to go a bit overboard each year, wanting a little bit of a lot of plants. The most exciting part is getting “the box” in the mail.  You know the one – from Baker Creek, containing all those wonderful packets of seeds that are just waiting to be planted and nurtured!  And as my garden plan continues to grow, and just like the plants themselves, my seed order continues to grow too.


Calendula flowers

My approach this year is a bit different – the more I study about herbs/spices, the more of those I want to have on hand.  Don’t get me wrong, I love all the fruits and vegetables that are on my list; but this year, the herbs will take center stage.  One special herb that I will have a home for is calendula; for a variety of reasons.

Several years ago, my son “developed” a rash – or really more like a burn – from cleaning chemicals used in his school.  This burn was much different than any other skin condition I had come across (raised/inflamed skin that was warm and bright red).  I was caught off guard by this burn and it was miserable for him. I tried just about everything – coconut oil, oatmeal wash, numerous lotions, salves, powders, even aloe vera. While some treatments seemed to help some, none really “healed” the burn completely or acted as a preventative.  At the same time, I was just starting to dabble in herbal studies.  That’s when I came across calendula.  I did a bit more reading on it and was impressed by the “reviews” of those that had used it – I thought I’d give it a shot since nothing else was working. 

Needless to say – I was speechless.  After just one thick application of calendula lotion, the burn seemed about half gone. The redness had gone down, the raised nature of the skin had diminished quite a bit, and the pain was reported as “so much better mom!”  After several days of treatment, the burn was all but gone, barely any evidence was left.  I continued to apply the lotion on a daily basis and it worked perfect as a preventative; providing the skin a shield of protection.  Thankfully, the cleaning supplies were eventually changed out for less harsh ones.  To this day, I recommend calendula to anyone and everyone with any kind of skin ailment, and continue to use it myself when I make my yearly burn salve.

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