By Mrs. Homegrown on Root Simple
I grow Calendula in order to make lotions, balms and salves. I?m a firm believer in its healing power, my belief based on the happy response by family and friends who use my salves. Calendula is anti-inflammatory and antiseptic. It soothes, heals and helps regenerate skin.
You?ll find Calendula extract as an ingredient in expensive beauty products, but you can make your own Calendula salve for pennies. I?m going to come back to how to do that in a later post, but first, I want to talk about planting Calendula so you can get some going in your own yard (or on your balcony) this spring.
When to Plant
Almost any time after frost: early spring into early summer. It doesn?t do well in scorching heat, so the earlier the better.
Where to Plant
As above, it?s not too picky about soil. You want part to full sun. Plant the seed about a 1/4? in the ground or container.
How far Apart
If planting in flats, seeds can be close, maybe 3 or 4 inches. If you?re planting straight into the ground you need to consider the final size of the plant, and how close you want them together. I like mine close, so in the Phan they are about 8? apart. I think 8? to 1 foot is a good range.
How Big Is It?
Depends. A foot or so high, maybe more if it?s older or very happy, and probably about a foot across.
Calendula needs regular water. The one thing you have to do is remember to water it.
You don?t really need it, but if you?ve got some nice compost you can spread some around the plants.
To save flowers for medicine, pick them when they?re open and at their peak. Don?t worry about picking too much. Picking just forces them to send out more flowers. Not picking is what leads to plants going to seed and closing up shop. Take the heads inside and dry them face down out of direct light. When dry enough to be crunchy, strip the petals and transfer to jar.
Calendula takes well to containerized life. Try it in pots or window boxes. It would do well in dula/self-irrigating container, too.http://www.rootsimple.com/2011/02/why-not-plant-some-calendula/
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