Genda: A medicinal decor for home

Introduction

As we have already discussed (on number 3 of series#SacredIndianHerbs) about rose, an ornamental plant grown in the gardens for its aesthesis and aroma, and having enormous medicinal properties. Likewise, genda is another most popular ornamental plant that you can grow in your garden for its sheer beauty and medicinal values. It is a brightly yellow colored flower with eye catching beauty. Be any auspicious occasion in India and genda is surely to spot as a part of decorative. It is also utilized as active component in lotions, salves, creams, added in various dishes to add flavor and plays a key role in providing many health benefits. This shows its abundance and economic reachability. So, number twelve of our series is about this vibrant flower, genda.

Scientific name: Tagetes erecta
Hindi name: Genda, Jhandu
English name: Pot calendula, African marigold

The most certain thing about our tradition is that we regard the plants that immensely benefits us by making them the part of our rituals and worships so that we could preserve them. In India, there are nearly 136 plants which are used for worshipping God and genda is one of them. Genda is regarded as a sacred flower, so it is mostly used in worshipping as well as in performing various rituals.

Medicinal usages of genda

While there are various species of genda flowers grown around the world, calendula is considered to be the most medicinal. It has proven as a natural medicine for several health conditions. Every part of the plant, i.e. panchanga (‘pancha’ means ‘five’ and ‘anga’ means ‘parts’ i.e root, bark, leaf, flower and fruit. They all together are called Panchanga) are beneficial to cure the diseases. Here’s a roundup of all its benefits so that you get motivated to plant this flower at home.

Instant first aid

We generally experience routine mishaps in the kitchen/home such as small cuts, burns that leads to bleeding. So in such cases, grind the petals of the genda flower into paste form and apply a thick layer on the affected areas by covering it with the paste completely. Tie a cotton gauge and the bleeding would stop immediately. It also helps to heal the wound fast.

Soothe your skin

It is a dream of every lady to get a glowy and youthful face. There are many products available in the markets that claim to provide you with the same skin. However, natural methods are considered the best as compared to various skin-care products. Genda plays a key role in removing acne from your skin. For this, grind the petals, add any oil and heat it. A paste will form and apply this paste on the acne/pimples to get a clear face. During winters, our body is unable to retain moisture leading to cracked heels and rough hands. For that we can add the juice of this plant to any ointment and apply on the affected parts. It will nourish the skin and the skin texture. Moreover, because of presence of anti-inflammatory properties, it is also used in the treatment of allergic reactions, eczema, bruising, fungal infections etc. For effective results, juice of the flower can directly be applied on the affected areas 2-3 times in a day regularly.

Piles/Haemorrhoids

Nowadays, many people spend long hours sitting both on the job and at home, leading to development of various diseases such as piles/haemorrhoids. In such cases, you don’t have to look for expensive treatments in order to treat piles. You can use genda as part of your natural hemorrhoid treatment. For this, grind the yellow petals into paste form and apply the paste over the affected site. It will shrink the swollen veins that subsides the pain and swelling. Moreover, bleeding will also stop. Hence regenerating the blood vessels to restore the normal integrity.

Ear infections

Genda has natural antiseptic and antibacterial properties which are effective in treating microbial infections of the ear. If pus is present in the ear, first clear all the pus from the affected site and then put 2-3 drops of genda oil over it. The pus formation will be resolved in some days.

Insect repellant

Genda have a pungent odor which warts off all the insects and mosquitoes when planted in the gardens. This is one of the main reason genda flowers are commonly planted in gardens. Their extract form is also used in bug sprays and many skin lotions in order to prevent mosquito bites. An interesting fact about this plant is that by rubbing its stem on a sting from an insect will eliminate the pain and the burning sensation too.

Therefore some flowers are not only used as fragrant plants, but they also have found a complementary use in medicine. One such, genda you can bring a lot of sunshine in your garden as well as in your lives by utilizing its herbal properties. Please grow these flowering plants and add vibrancy to your garden.

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Dr. Vinod Pr Upadhyay

B.Sc, BAMS, ND (Naturopathy & Yoga), Phd, FES, FIAES | Ayurvedic Pharmaceutics and Pharmacologist | Ex Principal at Himalaya Ayurvedic Medical College | Former Sr. Lecturer at Govt. Ayu. College, Gurukul Kangri

Haridwar

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