California Poppy and a Salve Recipe


As each new plant springs back to life in the garden, or our surrounding area, I have been researching it to check it’s possible use in soaps….my latest one in California Poppy and I have found some interesting information I thought I would share here plus a recipe I have used it in, a wound balm. I have been using it on a skin irritation I have had for ages and it’s very soothing and gentle, far more so than the lemon balm one which is quite rich.

I am not a herbalist so any info comes from the knowledge of others, this I found on  “The chemical structure of California poppy allows the plant to influence neurotransmitters in the human brain without depressing the central nervous system. The plant is a mild sedative, and although it is a relative of Opium poppy, it is not an opiate; thus, it does not cause dependence. Such action of the plant makes it safe to be used even in children. Along with the improvements in the physical and psychological state of a patient, California poppy has also antimicrobial properties, which explains its use as a topical remedy in the treatment of various skin conditions. It is said to be very helpful in cases of mild muscle spasms, cramps, pain of different origin, headaches, anxiety, irritability, nervousness and insomnia, may improve intellectual capacity, memory, and concentration, especially in the elderly. Topical poultices of the plant’s leaves serve as effective means to heal cuts and scrapes. The fresh root applied directly to the tooth soothes toothache”

I also found this on which has some really nice information on it including ” ….California poppy stabilizes the golden light of the heart, encouraging more self-responsibility and quiet inner development”

Now this sounds like something I could use so I am going to start drinking it as tea (in fact I added some to my smoothie this morning)….who knows I could just end up with a lighter heart, better memory and concentration, be less irritable and have improved intellectual capacity!! I need all those things. I haven’t found any contraindications for myself but anyone who does want to try this needs to research for themselves.

I find it useful to know what different herbs and flowers do, it makes sense to me to try what Nature has provided, rather than over the counter drug and I always get a sense of wellbeing when preparing and using herbs, flowers and weeds for different ailments.

Wound healing Balm:

Last year I made a Lemon Balm and Calendula Balm from a recipe I found At Ecocrazymum but her site no longer exists so I can’t give a link of source. I adapted it and used Comfrey, California Poppy and Calendula. Any 1 of these is a wound healing plant and would be fine on it’s own but I had all 3 on hand. Comfrey promotes fast healing, California Poppy is an analgesic and the lovely Calendula soothes, calms and heals.

First the olive oil needs to be infused with the qualities of the plants and this can either been done by heating gently in a double boiler or slow cooker for an hour  then leaving to cool, or by combining both in a jar and leaving on a windowsill in the sun for two weeks…I already had the oils made up. Strain through a strainer then once again through fine cloth to filter any finer particles.

2 cups of plant infused oil (made from 2 cups olive oil, 3/4 cup dried plant)

1/2 cup of beeswax

3 tbsp coconut oil

2 tbspn shea butter

5 drops tea tree oil

5 drops lavender oil

Melt the oils and beeswax together gently until just melted. Add the essential oils and pour into clean tins/jars to set. This will last up to 2 years and make around 3 cups.


23 thoughts on “California Poppy and a Salve Recipe

  1. That sounds so lovely Wendy – researching about plants and then making and using your own infusions and unguents seems to me to be the best use of the internet and our time. I am a big believer in self help for our health issues and I love how you expressed this: ” I always get a sense of wellbeing when preparing and using herbs, flowers and weeds for different ailments.” The healing has already begun! You are obviously a natural herbalist! 🙂 I’m finding it quite exciting following along and observing what you get up to next!


    • I might have been a witch in a past life! I do enjoy it and nice to have the time to go roaming the countryside! I am a big believer in self help too, I return from the doctors with all sorts to make him happy then shove them in a cupboard and research weeds and things 🙂


  2. Wow:-) that is fascinating I never knew that about California Poppy. Does it matter which color you use? I was drawn into your post by your beautiful pictures…love those bright colors! All your stuff is clicking + I feel you have found your “niche” and it appears to be flowing from your mind + hands! Happy creating Wendy!
    Never knew about poppies before-I will check that out!


    • I never knew that about the poppies either, it looks to be great medicine Robbie and have to say after drinking it for two days I got out of bed this morning and got dressed! lol Usually I sit in my dressing gown for an hour or two trying to wake up but this morning I felt all excited to get going. So there ya go! Can’t say I have noticed any euphoria on taking it which is probably just as well.

      Yes, I do think my “niche” 🙂 I didn’t read anything about what colour should be used. Do you know I have never put yellow or orange in my garden but have a new appreciation for the flowers now.


      • I have wanted to plant them in my garden. I seeded some this year but had no idea they were useful that way.I am interested in using more herbal choices-natural medicine= healthy living:-)
        “Eschscholzia californica” is the California poppy that you are using medicinally, right? They are such lovely flowers. I love the colors yellow + orange in my garden,-they make me smile:-)


  3. I feel as if I will soon have your entire site bookmarked. 😉 Thanks for the recipe and information on the poppy plant. Who knows once I get settled I may try my hand at a few of these salves and tinctures you have shared rather than going with my one ingredient remedies.


  4. Wonderful information Wendy… You are so clever.. You know you praise my Art.. I so Praise your ability in making these balms and healing herb recipes… Although I did make an Elderberry syrup which I have a teaspoon daily of.. to help build me up against any Flu bugs that are flying.. 🙂 You should be proud Wendy of all of your many talents. xox ❤


  5. Bonjour, thank you for dropping by my blog via Boomdeadda and deciding to follow it. I also appreciate your kind comments about my work. I like your blog very much and I am in sync with many of your beliefs. 🙂


  6. PattyB says:

    how do you prep the poppies-what parts do you use. I grow comfrey and CA poppies. I would like to try this recipe. Thank you for your research and willingness to share this info’! Blessings : )


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