Tag Archives: Calendula

Wellness Wednesday: Calendula

Calendula officinalis – Also known as marigold or pot marigold.

Calendula’s bright flowers range in color from yellow to a bright orange. It has widely spaced toothy leaves and grows to a height of about 18 inches. Be sure not to confuse this bushy, aromatic annual with African or French Marigold.

It is a readily self seeding annual. Plant in direct sun with well drained soil with moderate water. Pick flower heads daily to encourage more growth. Calendula will repel eelworm in the garden and is a good companion plant for beans, lettuce, potatoes, roses and tomatoes.

Calendula is a great soothing herb for the skin. I use it in a lot of my salves, oil and skin care recipes to sooth and calm skin redness, rash, and irritation. It is good to treat cuts, burns, lacerations, bruises, diaper rash, sprains and inflammation. It promotes rapid healing and helps minimize scarring.

Calendula is great in a poultice for sore nipples, ulcers, sprains and varicose veins.

It is also a very good lymphatic herb that helps thin and drain lymph that sometimes gets clogged and congested.  My husband had very thick lymph around his neck and ears that was causing ear issues and with massage, and Calendula tea, his lymph drainage improved and so did his ear problems. It also boosts immunity by increasing lymphatic drainage. Note that Calendula tea will make you pee a lot, and this is a good thing. Just be sure to drink plenty of water with it to help aid the body in the clearing of toxins from the body.

I hope you can see why this wonderful and beautiful herb is always at hand in my herbal “Medicine Cabinet“.

How do you use Calendula?

 

Shared on Wildcrafting Wednesday.

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Itchy Dog Oil: Oil for the itchy dog.

*This is not intended as medical or veterinary advice. Please consult your vet if your pet has any persistent or concerning problems.*

My parents have a dog named Baby. Baby has a nasty skin issue that “looks like elephant skin”, which he is pretty sure is caused by allergies. He chews on him self because he is super itchy and this chewing is causing Baby to get fungal and bacterial skin infections. His skin on his belly and parts of his chest are black because of skin damage he has from these persistent allergies. The vet has my parents giving him benedryl once or twice a day to help with the allergies, antibiotics for the bacteria, and a topical cream for the fungus. They have given him steroids, cortisone and all sorts of other stuff as needed too. Poor Baby just has it bad.

They are visiting this week and poor baby is so itchy! I felt so bad for him I mad him a itchy skin oil to help relieve some of the irritation. I don’t have any books about using oils on dogs so I used the same philosophy as I do with people. 40% of anything that comes into contact with your skin absorbs into your body, so I will not put anything on my skin that would hurt or injure me internally. I also did not choose anything that could be harmful to the dog unless he had an allergy to the ingredients.  I did a spot test on the dog skin a day before applying the oil over all his parts to check for redness and irritation. I would suggest doing this on anyone with sensitivities.

In the oil (10 oz container) I put:

4.5 oz Nettle infused olive oil

4.5 oz Plantain infused olive oil

40 drops Lavender essential oil

40 drops Tea Tree essential oil

40 drops Calendula essential oil

Apply the oil with clean cotton pads or balls, never double dipping in the oil. Always use a new cotton ball for every new area of application. Apply liberally to the effected aria (after spot testing to check for allergic reaction).

 

The reasons I chose these ingredients:

Nettle oil: Anti-Inflamitory,  very effective in scalp related problem like scaly scalp (dandruff) and psoriasis, increases blood circulation, great tonic to revitalize body, organ functioning and blood purification.

Plantain oil: used for bruises, bug bites, swellings, scarring, strained ligaments, muscles or tendons, rashes and skin irritations. Plantain is often used as a drawing agent, to draw out thorns, splinters or other foreign material.

Lavender essential oil:  lavender helps abscesses, acne, allergies, athlete’s feet and fungal infections, boils, bruises, burns, cold sores, cuts, dermatitis, eczema, hives, inflammations, insect bites, lice, psoriasis, rashes, ringworm, scabies, scars, shingles, stretch-marks, sunburns, and wounds.

Calendula essential oil: Good for dry and damaged skin, skin inflammations, rashes, diaper irritations, and other skin disorders.

Melaleuca (Tea Tree) essential oil: Disinfectant, acne treatment, bug bites, repells lice and ticks, dandruff, minor cuts, scrapes bruises. Antibacterial, anti fungal and antiviral properties have been found in various studies as well.

 

If I had other ingredients I would have also liked to use chamomile essential oil for the calming properties and vitamin E for a preservative and skin benefits but I did not have these handy. After three days of application the oil seems to help calm Baby’s itchiness and his black area seems to be lightening up in places. This calming healing oil seems to be helping. We have been applying the oil once a day to his belly, chest (he has a bald spot where he rubs a lot), on his paws and on the outside of his ears. I would like it applied twice a day but it doesn’t seem to be happening. That is life!

Did this help? I will post pictures and follow up as the use continues. I think it is reducing the blackness on his belly but we will have to wait and see with comparison photos. I will see my parents and their dog again in about two weeks after Thanksgiving.