The legend of the marigold flower, how-to grow it and other uses you never knew apart from use in prayer rituals

#PODCAST: Marigolds are an annual blooming plant that is not only easy to grow but perfect to cheer up any garden with a pop of colour.

Legend has it that the scent of the flowers help guide the spirits from the cemetery to the altars. The yellow and orange marigolds symbolize the sun and light.

The marigold, and flowers in general, represent the fragility of life. It is believed that the spirits of our departed loved ones come to visit during the celebration and marigolds are used to help guide the spirits with their vibrant color.

An offering for Lord Muruga

In South Africa, marigolds are popularly sold ahead of the Thai Poosam Kavady festival which is in praise of the Hindu deity – Lord Muruga.

Marigold flowers for sale

Newsbreak Lotus FM spoke to Dolly Prithipaul, who is a small scale marigold farmer from Cliffdale near Shongweni in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands.

She explains the do’s and don’ts to bloom the perfect crop of marigolds.

Listen to the podcast below

Due to their antioxidant properties, uses for marigolds include:

1. Homemade Skin Treatment

Ointment can be used to soothe sunburns, warts, bites, acne and ulcerations, in addition to healing wounds, dry skin and blisters.

2. Digestive-Soothing Tea

Tea can be made with marigold flowers to lower symptoms caused by inflammatory bowel diseases/colitis. Marigold tea is also beneficial for treating gastritis, acid reflux and ulcers, as well as reducing stomach or menstrual cramps.

3. Immune-Boosting Formula

Marigold (calendula) drops or extract are sometimes used to manage symptoms of coughs, sore throats, or fevers.

4. Eye, Genital or Skin Infection Treatment

Salves made with marigold have long been used to treat fungal infections of the genitals, feet, eyes, mouth, skin, and also to lower hemorrhoids, anal tears and candida.

Some of the active ingredients found in marigolds (calendula) that give it these capabilities include: (4)

  • Plant sterols known as calendulin
  • Calendic acid
  • Polysaccharides
  • Linoleic acid
  • Carotenoids
  • Flavonoids
  • Triterpenes saponins, such as triterpenoid
  • Tocopherols
  • Oleanolic acid glycosides

About Indianspice Staff Reporter

Report and write stories for Indianspice.co.za. It is our ambitious goal to cover issues/events/news concerning South Africa and the diaspora.

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