While the flowers and leaves of both varieties are edible, Roman chamomile tends to taste bitter, which is why we recommend growing sweet-tasting common chamomile.Chamomile blooms best in a location with full sun, but it will grow in partial shade, too.Organic matter like this helps the soil retain moisture while also improving drainage, which is especially important with clay soil.For raised beds, use Miracle-Gro® Performance Organics™ Raised Bed Mix, which provides excellent drainage and important nutrients to promote strong root development and plant growth.Fill in the rest of the hole with more soil, pressing firmly but gently around the base of the plant.The best way to know if you need to water the chamomile is to stick your index finger into the soil about an inch down near the base of the plant.For a convenient way to feed container-grown chamomile, use a water-soluble fertilizer like Miracle-Gro® Performance Organics® Edibles Plant Nutrition every week or two throughout the growing season. .
How to Grow Chamomile in Your Herb & Flower Garden
I walked into the raised garden beds of a property where I would be working and was delighted by the array of ground cover flowers, prolifically growing vegetables, and leafy herbs.A line of beautiful white flowers, two feet tall and smelling like sweet apples, grew between the onions and the cabbage.The soft foliage complemented the starspray flowers that bent over the cabbage heads with a dopey and relaxed abandon.Commonly known as pinhead, scented mayweed, and (my personal favorite) babuna, the latin name for this delightful flower is Matricaria chamomilla, translating to “water of youth.” It’s a plant native to central and southern Europe, although it has spread far and wide around the globe.More popularly, the dried and crushed flowers and leaves have been used to brew a relaxing tea, reputedly with the benefit of aiding a deep sleep and calming stomach pain.This variety of scented mayweed is often cultivated for its essential oils, and the aromatic flowers that go into that teabag you’re hopefully enjoying while reading this.This is partly due to the nature of the roots of chamomile – they are shallow and just barely grip onto the top soil.That also makes M. chamomilla more sensitive to water conditions during the initial stages of growth when the plant is establishing itself.If you don’t have one, pick up a rain gauge so you can measure that free watering from ol’ Mother Nature, so your own hose and sprinkler may be used effectively only a supplement.Although its flowers and leaves are suitable for harvest, the plant is typically grown instead for its benefits as a ground cover.The low-growing Roman acts well as an accent plant while the German variety is best put into a large container where it can spread out and grow freely.The naturally strong scent of chamomile offers resistance to many insects, and that benefit is extended to other plants growing near it.Growing your chamomile seeds indoors prior to popping them into the ground is the most effective, trusted method for growth.If you place your seeds in natural light (like I do), make sure to rotate them every few days so they do not grow too far in one direction.Fertilizers higher in nitrogen are more beneficial; chamomile’s weak root system has little use for phosphorus in its development.However, as with most plant diseases and pests, proper care and attention to watering minimizes any of these potential headaches you could encounter.Powdery mildew is the most common problem with scented mayweed, but it is a concern only when the weather is hot and damp for prolonged periods of time.Aphids, thrips, and mealybugs can bother M. chamomilla as well, but the plant is generally pest and problem free.Make a batch of tea at triple or quadruple strength, allow it to steep overnight, and use it the next day as an herbicide and aid against mildew.The ideal time to harvest is when the flower petals begin to curl downward, instead of growing out straight as they ordinarily do.If you’re drying the flower heads, separate them and arrange with some breathing room in between on a piece of cheesecloth or a mesh surface.You can adjust the strength of the tea by really cramming those flower heads in there for a stronger flavor, or by adding just a few if you want a milder taste.Although I’ve never used it for this purpose, you can even rinse your hair with unsweetened tea to bring a nice shine to those locks of yours.It seems like everybody is a winner with this lovely white flower, be it the annual German or perennial Roman. .
Chamomile Grow Guide
Young seedlings easily tolerate spring frosts, and may survive winters in mild climates.Companions Cabbage, Lettuce, Spinach, Calendula, Cilantro, Feverfew and Mint.When allowed to shed mature seeds, chamomile often becomes a welcome volunteer plant.Our Garden Planner can produce a personalized calendar of when to sow, plant and harvest for your area.Feathery chamomile foliage contrasts well with the textures of other herbs and flowers.Cut branches when they are holding numerous open flowers, and hang in small bunches to dry. .
The Simplicity Behind Growing Chamomile Herbs From Seed
Some growers even surface sow the seed in a controlled environment, which proves to yield the most success on germination.Leaves Colors & Descriptions: When fully grown, chamomile plants will have double-divided and have a feathery appearance.Growth Habits: Chamomile grows in either a partially-shady or totally sunny environment when the last frosts of the winter have passed.General Information & Uses of Chamomile: Chamomile is known for having many medicinal and herbal effects including properties to help improve the quality of one's skin, can treat infections by acting as an antibiotic, and it can help treat bites/rashes/itches by acting as it is hypoallergenic so it neutralizes free radicals that infect the skin.It can also be used as an essential oil and helps treats minor aches and pains that may creek up in the body over time.Many people swear by it as a natural remedy to help them feel better and treat arthritis, muscle stiffness, spasms, or other conditions as well.Chamomile is a great plant to grow in your garden as none of it goes to waste, and it serves a variety of practical purposes both in food and in medicine as well.Propagate healthier plants by regularly collecting chamomile seeds to keep them continually growing new ones.One great trick is to chop the flowers into tiny pieces and store them in ice cube trays till they are ready to be used. .
How to Grow Chamomile
It’s a hardy annual with pleasantly scented flowers, and is primarily grown for medicinal use and teas.Learn how to grow organic chamomile in containers or in the herb garden.Continue reading for some tips on how to grow chamomile from seed.Sow from the last frost date through early summer, either indoors or direct where it is to grow.Chamomile is a fairly adaptable plant, but does best in full sun in well-drained soil.The leaves can be gathered in spring to early summer and used fresh or dry. .