Chives and Calendula

It isn’t a combination you hear of often, though they do both feature n my edible flower and weed salads, and may do so again as I try to feed garden weeds to the visitors on Sunday.

Today they are together by coincidence. I’ve been meaning to have a go at a hand cream for a while as my eczema is coming back and my hands are starting to crack. I’ve looked up a recipe and I knew I was dead-heading this week ready for Open Farm Sunday (sorry to mention it again) so while I was taking the seed heads off I also picked a good selection of flowers (trying to get as many orange ones as possible) . It worked out at 26 flower heads to two thirds of a jar. They are now steeping, and I will see how it goes. I have also traced last year’s beeswax so may be able to source both flowers and wax from the farm. Theoretically I could source the oil too as we are growing oilseed rape this year and also planting sunflowers as game cover. However, hand pressing my own oil isn’t my idea of fun as i don’t imagine it coming easily.


The other project is chive blossom vinegar. Unlike the hand cream, which has been at the back of Β my mind for some years, I didn’t even know this existed until two days ago. It took a couple of jugs of flower heads, a brief struggle with some bumble bees (don’t worry, I left them plenty) and some warmed vinegar of two different sorts. One lot is in white malt vinegar and the other in cider vinegar. It’s not actually an experiment, it’s just what I had in the cupboard.


The recipe, if you can call it that as it’s so simple, is now on the Recipe Page under the Resources tab. After two days the vinegar has already taken on a fierce pink colour – not really sure how to describe it.. It also tastes quite good, though I do know that I’m supposed to leave it a lot longer yet.



14 thoughts on “Chives and Calendula

  1. Melissa

    I love adding lamb’s quarters to salads. It grows all over our property and I think it looks pretty in the garden. A weed indeed!

      1. Helen

        Is that because of the manual work in itself or because of irritants on the skin, do you think?

        This is my seconds major flare-up. The first a few years ago simply disappeared, whereas this time I keep getting infections and so stuff like calendula aren’t enough (eg I need anti-bacterial steroid cream).

      2. quercuscommunity

        I think it’s a mix. There seems to be a cycle that affects all areas of my eczema and there can be a problem with washing up liquid. These can both cause bad cracking etc. The summer problem is dryness rather than cracking, which I put down to wear and tear.

  2. Helen

    Looking forward to the chive recipe… I would like to try it out as an alternative to plonking the flowers in salad. Ie good if I can enjoy the flowers later in the year πŸ™‚


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