Bring a little sunshine and cheer into your garden! You can't help but smile when you see a cheerful, bright orange calendula flower smiling back at you. This beautiful marigold is edible and also provides beautiful medicine. At our farm, it blooms almost year-round! Although it's technically an annual, it has an amazing ability to re-seed itself so it pops up year after year. (Calendula officinalis)
Why We Love It
Here are some of the reasons why we love calendula...
1) SOOTHING - Calendula is very soothing for topical heat and irritation. It's great on burns, boils, rashes, and sunburn.
2) - PROTECTOR - Calendula helps to stimulate the immune system, so can be used to help with sore throats, infections, and swollen glands.
3) DELICIOUS - Calendula flowers are as delicious as they are beautiful. Sprinkle the petals in your salads for a gorgeous pop of yummy color.
How to Grow It
Here's how to grow Calendula:
|LIKES GARDEN MOISTURE
|USDA ZONES 3-10 (Not sure? Find your growing zone here)
|18 INCHES TALL & WIDE
|Growing from Seed
Direct seed in garden in early spring after last frost. Plant 2” deep, cover with soil, tamp, and keep moist until germination, usually 7-14 days. It needs cool temps to germinate.
Pro Tip: Calendula prefers cooler weather. This plant is a wonderful annual re-seeder. It will drop seeds and pop up the following year. It seems to grow best from seed that is planted in Fall or early Spring.
Winter Sowing is the easiest way to start these seeds. Here's a seed-starting tutorial for you. You won't believe how easy it is!
How to Harvest & Use It
The parts of the calendula that are used for eating and medicine are the beautiful flowers. They can be used fresh or dried. Here's a great video from the Herbal Jedi about how to use calendula:
And here's another great resource for how to use calendula from Sajah Popham.