​How to Grow ​​​Chamomile

It is said that the Egyptians dedicated Chamomile to their sun god and valued it over all other herbs for its healing qualities. Due to its sedative and relaxing properties Chamomile was an ingredient in some love potions of the middle ages. Chamomile flowers are used in alternative medicine as an anodyne, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, nervine, stomachic, tonic, and vasodilator. The anti-inflammatory properties make it good for rheumatism, arthritis, and other painful swellings.


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Growing Notes

  • German Chamomile grows outward and upward to height of approximately two feet and produces the familiar small white flowers that are popular in herbal teas and medicine.
  • Chamomile prefers full sun, and a fertile and well-drained sandy loam.
  • Chamomile is best started in mid-spring, indoors about 4-6 weeks before transplanting. Small seeds are light dependant germinators and should be tamped lightly into your medium, or covered lightly with a thin layer of soil (1/4" or less) deep. To simulate natural cycles or warm and cool and promote germination, provide stratification by moving the seed flat from a warm location during the day to a cooler one at night, alternating between approximately 85 and 65 degrees F. Be sure to keep seeds moist during this period. Germination should take place within 10-14 days. Chamomile will self- sow once the plant goes to seed.



Annual (zones 3-8)


10 to 14 days


2 years



Fertile, sandy, well-drained loam


Full sun




8" apart, rows 18"


60 to 65 days


When plants reach height of approximately 2" and have begun to display their first true leaves, they are ready for transplanting. Do not allow seedling to grow too large in flats as they may not grow as well later in their life cycle. When moving seedlings outdoors, space small groups of 2-4 plants 8" apart in rows 18" apart.


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First harvest can be done when plants are in full bloom, approximately two months from sowing. Tiny white flowers can easily be cut from plant. Repeated harvests are possible, just allow plant to generate full bloom before collecting. To dry flowers, place onto well-ventilated screen out of direct sunlight for one week (or until dry), stirring periodically.

Saving Seeds

Chamomile easily reseeds itself, but the seed can easily be collected. Remove the flower heads when they dry up on the stem; spread them out to finish drying in a protected location out of direct sunlight. Thresh the heads to remove the seed, and store it in a cool dry place for 3-4 years.

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