Calendula is likely one of the most common remedies used in folk and clinical herbalism and has a broad spectrum of uses and applications. It is an incredible plant. From German folk medicine, to the ancient Greeks, to the homeopaths and clinical herbal traditions of North America- everywhere Calendula pops up it is adopted and used as a valuable medicinal agent.
It get’s it name Calendula because it has been seen to flower throughout the “calends of every month,” as we see it has the same root of our word for calendar.
While commonly thought of as simply a topical remedy used for minor cuts, scrapes and wounds, it’s common for people to overlook the other uses of Calendula as an internal agent. It is known as a herbal “polycrest,” meaning that it has a very wide range of actions that are beneficial for a variety of common conditions both acute and chronic. In our modern world of chronic digestive imbalances, leaky gut syndrome and food intolerance, it is one of the most important remedies for a symptomatic pattern that is almost universal amongst modern humans.
No other remedy truly surpasses Calendula in it’s ability to effectively keep wounds clean, facilitate healing, and prevent infection. From the run of the day cuts and scrapes and road-rashes, to more intense wounds like lacerations, puncture wounds and traumas, Calendula is your go to topical first aid remedy.
Once again, it’s major benefits is that it is not just healing the wound, nor is it “killing the bacteria,” but it is operating on the level beneath the skin and the wound itself, maintaining a healthy flow of lymphatic fluids and thus keeping a consistent supply of immunological components and preventing any infection from spreading. As with all things Calendula related, it is best for wounds which are swollen, puffy, red, inflamed, and filled with pus and fluids. Now you can of course use Calendula in all manner of wounds, but those with a marked dampness are particularly benefited by it.
It is useful here to differentiate it from a few other common topical remedies that are typically used. Comfrey (Symphytum officinale) is a great vulnerary agent as well, and combines quite nicely with Calendula in this regard, just be sure to exercise caution with Comfrey as it sometimes heals a wound a bit too quickly and can seal in a deep wound and lead to infection (hence it combines well with Calendula which works on that deeper level).th.