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Wednesday, 18 December 2013

My garden is smiling!

We’ve had absolutely beautiful rain over the past couple of weeks and my garden is smiling! Nobody shows gratitude like Marigolds do!

My kind-hearted gardener, Chrissie, once strew a couple of seeds somewhere in the garden and since then I’ve had them come up in the most unexpected places! If you grow a vegetable garden, plant Marigolds amongst the vegetables. Marigolds are easy to grow and they help keep away aphids. The relationship between plants and insects is known as ‘companion planting’ and it’s by far the safest, natural way to garden organically.

Tagetes is a genus of 56 species of annual and perennial, mostly herbaceous, plants in the sunflower family (Asteraceae or Compositae). The genus is native to North and South America, but some species have become naturalized around the world.

Marigolds are the sunshine of the garden. They react thankfully to rain and sunshine and tender loving care and yet do not seem to mind if you neglect them either. Very independent flowers indeed!

Many of us have Marigolds in our gardens. From the small, miniature variety to the large Tagetas erecta, they are well-known for their habit of spreading all over the garden as their prolific seeds are blown by the wind, spread by birds and inadvertently by the gardener herself as they are cleared out once they die off as winter approaches. I myself am a great Marigold-lover as they are so useful to fill empty spots in the garden, growing in just about any type of soil.

But did you know that Marigolds or, the official name Tagetes, makes a great cup of tea?

By drinking marigold (calendula officinalis) tea you can treat gastric ulcer and infections of mouth and throat and improve digestion by stimulation of bile production and also helps to cure menstrual cramps, liver disease and constipation. Marigold has also anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic properties. Marigold is mainly used externally to treat bruises, wounds, eczema, skin disorders, haemorrhoids and burns.
- Resource

Marigold Tea Recipe:
To prepare Marigold Tea, boil 1 liter of water. Then, put 1 or 2 teaspoons of the plant and allow it to infuse for 10 minutes. Against bile disorders, drink at moderate temperature 2 to 3 cups a day, and it can also used in dressings, bandages and compresses.

Drink Calendula tea nearly 3 times a day works as a body cleanser. It acts as a detox, protects your liver, gall bladder and other internal organs from long-term failure or damage. It is also noted for reducing sore throat and fever associated with common cold and other infections. Also, it aids the body in absorbing food, particularly fatty food items. Calendula tea, if consumed after you eat, can prevent symptoms of heartburn as well.

The specific species Tagetes erecta has been used for 100′s of years for traditional and herbal medicine. In Modern times, this plant is used for the yellow dye you can create from it.

Some of the ailments Tagetes erecta helps with are apparently kidney issues, muscular pain, ulcers and wounds but can also help with earache. For external purposes the leaves are used on boils and carbuncles.

The most important part of the plant is what it does for your eyes. Lutein is the main ingredient of the plant and that is very good for your eyes. The lutein acts as an antioxidant and protects the eyes against cell damage. Lutein filters some of the sun’s damaging rays.

Lutein can be found in your eye’s macular region but you only get lutein from the food you consume. - Lutein info from Wikipedia

Evolution Magazine proclaims the health benefits of Marigolds as such:

Rich in Vitamins and Minerals
The major advantage of consuming Calendula tea is basically the nutritional elements present in it. Marigold contains lots of beta carotene, a nutrient present in carrots. Beta-carotene can boost the body’s defense mechanism, cut down the risks of some forms of cancer, and helps prevent rheumatoid arthritis as well as other bone-joint inflammations. In short, you’ll get almost the equivalent beta-carotene from drinking this tea that you can from consuming carrots, in addition to a rich dosage of vitamin-A to boot. Calendula tea also consists of other sugars and oils that, along with beta-carotene, can help improve your immune system greatly.

Prevents gastrointestinal problems
Calendula tea is usually beneficial to those struggling with gastrointestinal problems. Calendula can shield the linings of the intestines and stomach by suppressing the prostaglandin-E1 (PGE). Also, it can help limit the negative impacts related to gastritis, stomach cancer and peptic ulcer.

Promotes healthy skin
As mentioned above, Calendula contains carotenoids, which serve as antioxidants that enhance healthier skin. This tea could be applied externally by using a piece of cloth to alleviate several skin problems like bug bites, rashes, scrapes and minor cuts. This tea can be utilized to give your skin a healthier look and many people state that it can help reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles.

Women’s health
Another fantastic benefit to consuming Calendula tea is the fact that it controls menstrual periods in females. During these periods, drinking Calendula tea can relieve pains related to abdominal cramps also it can lessen the incidence of menopausal flashes, headaches, and nausea or vomiting. For people who’re struggling with menstrual problems, Calendula tea can help alleviate and reduce the pain and other uncomfortable symptoms.

(Disclaimer: It should not be used if there is hypersensitivity or allergy to Calendula. It should not be taken during pregnancy and breastfeeding because its effects are unknown. It is not used in open skin and eye irritations. Interactions with other drugs have not been described, although due to the presence of mucilage, there could be a potential risk of delay or decreasing the oral absorption of other active principles.)

They say the Marigold is a good rain doctor also! If the flowers are closed in the early morning, it will rain that day. When picking the flowers, you should only pick in the bright sunshine and in the middle of the day.

Kiep frolicking in the Marigolds

"I begged my garden for forgiveness and she gave me Marigolds."



  1. Most enjoyable!! Thanks for all the usefull info. Your garden is not smiling, it is laughing!! Smile...

    1. Ha ha! Thank you, and so am I Liz, the rain has been most welcome!


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