Calendula - Calendula arvensis - (Daisy family)

Characteristics and uses:

It is an annual and biennal herbaceous plant, known as field marigold (the most commonly cultivated is the "pot marigold" - calendula officinalis). It is native to Europe and the Mediterranean. The flowers, up to 3 centimeters wide, show a bright yellow to yellow-orange ray florets around a center of yellow disc floret and bloom in Sardinia from February to May. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant): they are pollinated by bees. Calendula species have been used traditionally in cooking and as medicinal herbs for centuries. Young shoots, leaves and flowers, raw or cooked, are edible. The leaves are very rich in vitamins and minerals: they are similar to Taraxacum officinale (dandelion) in nutritional value. The petals can be used fresh in salads, soups and stews, or dried, as a replacement for the expensive saffron (it is known as poor man's saffron), and also to add colour to butter and cheese.


The genus name Calendula is a modern Latin diminutive of calendae " (calendar, the first day of the month), and the common name "marigold" refers to the Virgin Mary (see History and folklore). The scientific name of marygold (tagetes) derives from the Etruscan God "Tages", the God of wisdom.

Other uses:

Calendula tea provides health benefits, as well as being delicious. Calendula essential oil is still used medicinally, as an anti-inflammatory, and a remedy for healing wounds. But calendula plants are known to cause allergic reactions, and should be avoided during pregnancy.

History and folklore:

Roman and Greeks used the golden calendula in many ceremonies, and it is a sacred flowers also in India. The marigold was called Mary's Gold by early Christians who placed the flowers around statues of Mary, offering the blossoms in place of coin. Marigold was a sacred flower to the Aztecs. According to the language of flowers, marigold, known as the herb of the sun, is symbolic of passion and creativity, comfort and simplicity, but also of jealousy and sorrow.

**** Erbe Matte cannot take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally. ****

****From the plants we collect, strictly by hand, only the open flowers.****