Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) is also known as German Chamomile or Wild Chamomile. It is an annual flowering plant in the daisy family that is used as an herbal tea. It is known for its curative properties including treating anxiety and an upset stomach.
It is also a terrific pollinator plant and repels some insect pests -- making it a good companion to other edible crops. It is native to Europe and is hardy from USDA zones 2 to 9.
A close relative is Roman chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile) – it is a creeping groundcover that is perennial and used herbally in the same way as German Chamomile.
Chamomile prefers rich soil in a sunny location. It can survive in hot climates, with some protection from the afternoon sun, but it does better in the cool spring and fall seasons in our region.
It does not need any fertilizer and it grows as well in containers as in the ground.
Chamomile is easy to start from seed or you can purchase a small plant. In future years, you may find it reseeding itself where it grew before and you may never need to buy it again!
To harvest chamomile, cut off the flower spikes and hang them upside down to dry for a few weeks to concentrate the flavors. After they are dry, snip off the flowerheads and place them in a jar. Add a spoonful or so to a teacup and pour boiling water over them. Let them steep about 5 minutes, sip and enjoy.
Chamomile: You Can Grow That!
The video was produced by Washington Gardener Magazine as part of our Plant Profile series for Mid-Atlantic USA gardeners.
Audio and text by Kathy Jentz
Edited by Jamie Oberg
➤ If you enjoy this video, please give it a thumbs up and subscribe to our Youtube channel (thank you!)
➤Remember to TURN ON notifications to know when our new videos are out
➤ FIND Washington Gardener Magazine ONLINE
~ Podcast: GardenDC