CHARACTERISTICS OF CALENDULA
Common English name: Pot Marigold, Inglés Garden Marigold, Garden Marigold, Gold-Bloom, Holligold, Marigold, Marybud.
Etymology: The word Calendula derives from the Latin calendas, meaning "first of the month". It refers to the plant blooms every month, even in winter, when temperatures are not too low.
Common name in other languages
- Spanish: maravilla, caléndula, maravillas mejicanas, tudescas, flamenquilla, reinita, rosa de muertos, flor de muerto.- Galician: maravalla, calendula, pampullo
Calendula flower and leaves (Calendula officinalis)
Scientific name: Calendula officinalis L.
- Taxonomic Synonyms: Calendula aurantiaca, Calendula eriocarpa, Calendula hydruntina, Caltha officinalis
Source: The source of the plant is unknown but it lies between the Mediterranean Sea region, Egypt and Southern Europe. It is believed to be the result of natural hybridization among other types of marigolds, probably from Calendula arvensis.
Habitat: from 0 to 1,000 m. high, is located in gardens, waste lands, roadsides, near villages. Cultivated as an ornamental gardening.
Distribution: Southern Europe, Mediterranean region, North Africa, Western Asia, America.
Calendula plant description
Pot marigold or calendula (Calendula officinalis) is an annual or sometimes biennial plant with erect stems up to 40 - 70cm. tall. It has a deep taproot.
The leaves are alternate, petiolate, oblong, spatulate, margins entire or with few teeth, and hairy.
Botanical illustration of Pot marigold (Calendula officinalis)
Detail of flowers that make up the floral section: a) tubulose flower b) ray floret
Calendula is known for its large flower heads, 5 - 7cm. in diameter. It blooms from June to early November.
Marigold flower is an inflorescence. It belongs to the family of Compositae, and, as its name suggests, each flower head is composed of many tiny flowers, yellow or orange, arranged in a chapter or floral disc.
Each flower head is a receptacle or involucre where the flowers are arranged. It consists of bracts and rises on a long peduncle or flower stalk.
Marigold flowers are radiated, that's to say, in the middle of the floral heads yellow florets are arranged in the center (male),, and,at the periphery, there are ray florets (female), that look like orange petals.
In the illustration with the letter a) states the drawing of a tubulated flower, and with the letter b) a ray floret.
The entire plant has a strong unpleasant odor.
Calendula, a honey plant
Pot marigold is a honey plant and its flowers are pollinated by bees, bumblebees, beetles and hoverflies.
Photography of marigold flowers
Uses of calendula
Composition of calendula
The analysis of the chemical composition of pot marigold inflorescences described that the plant contains essential oils (from 0.2 to 0.4%), mucilage, salicylic acid, phytosterols, rich in carotenoids, glycosides, flavonoids and tannins.
Its components highlights the presence of a bitter principle, calenduline (a triterpene saponin) with antiphlogistic, that's to say, to treat inflammation. The plant also contains salicylic acid, terpenoids (alpha and beta amyrin), caryophyllene and quercetin, with an analgesic effect.
Calendula also contains gentístic acid and malic acid, antibacterial and analgesic effects.
What is calendula officinalis good for?
All these components have made calendula in a reputed vulnerary remedy, because the crushed leaves applied to bruises, and flowers to be used internally to treat mouth sores, gingivitis, ulcers and sore throats.
Calendula is also effective as a remedy emmenagogue, to regulate the menstrual cycle, because its richness in flavonoids gives it adequate properties to repair blood vessels and restore good circulation in the body. In cosmetics, the marigold is used for skin care due to its bactericidal properties and because of the softening values for the skin.
ANALYSIS OF MARIGOLD
More information on calendula in the listing above
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This material is for informational purposes only. In case of doubt, consult the doctor.