by Diane Kennedy Snyder
Chamomile with its rich apple scent is one of the most popular herbal teas in the world. Most people think of chamomile as tea. Chamomile is much more.
There are several types of chamomile. German Chamomile/ Matricaria recutita is a tall annual, which grows wild. Roman Chamomile/ Chamaemelum nobile is a low-growing perennial. Another type of chamomile is Moroccan Chamomile, often called the poor cousin.
Chamomile was worshiped by ancient Egyptians, prescribed by many a Greek doctor and is well known as one of the sacred herbs of the ancient manuscript, Lacnunga. Chamomile comes from the Greek word meaning ground apple.
Chamomile has many different applications: sedative, relaxant, depression aid, stress reliever, soothes teething and colic, calms the digestive system, settles nervous indigestion, gastritis, relieves headaches, menstruation, disorders of the kidney, liver and the bladder, hay fever, insomnia, hiccups, stomach cramps, vomiting, appetite loss, spastic pain, arthritis, is an anti-inflammatory agent, inhalant for asthma treatment; lightens, cleans, and conditions hair, used as a rinse for dandruff; skin cleanser; relieves eczema, helps ease itching, acne, burns, infected wounds, ulcers, and facial neuralgia, diarrhea aid, and is an insect repellent.
Chamomile is also a wonderful apple flavored tea that can be enjoyed any time.
Grow chamomile in full sun to partial shade. This herb likes sandy, well-drained, lightly dry soil. Try your hand at growing chamomile. You can find chamomile at most nurseries or garden shops or contact us, we can help you. We stock chamomile flowers and chamomile tea.
Chamomile can be blended with other herbs to enhance its already wonderful scent in sachets, essential baths, etc. It mixes well with: Benzoin, Bergamot, geranium, lavender, lemon, marjoram neroli.
Here are a few approaches for some common ailments:
Add a few drops of chamomile essential oil to cream to relieve itching.
Make a poultice with chamomile. Wet the poultice and place on affected area. Cover with a warm cloth.
2 cups chamomile tea in the bath soothes restless infants.
Heat 1/2 cups of dairy cream. Mix in 2 T. chamomile flowers. Infuse 30 minutes (let steep). Strain. Apply with a cotton ball. Remove excess with a tissue. Refrigerate. Use within 1 week.
Place 1 1/2 cups of fresh chamomile or 1 oz. of dry chamomile in a bowl. Boil 2 1/2 cups of water. Pour over the chamomile. Cover. Steep 30 minutes. Strain. Cool. Use as a facial rinse. Store refrigerated up to 3 days.
Skin Softening Milk Bath
Place 3 T. powdered milk and 1/4 cup chamomile in a small muslin bag. Place the bag in your bath.
Relieves cramps, dizziness, indigestion, and nervous stomach. Chamomile tea taken at mealtime stimulates the appetite. Taken at bedtime the tea will calm the nerves and help with insomnia.
Reduce eye strain and eye inflammation. Soak 2 tea bags in warm water for 2 - 3 minutes. Place the tea bag on the eyes for ten minutes or more.
Under-eye Swelling and Puffiness
Soak the tea bags in cool water. Place the tea bags over the eyes until the eye looks less puffy.
People who have known sensitivities to ragweed may experience reactions to chamomile and should use caution.
Don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions, need help finding quality vitamins, herbs, lavender or chamomile flowers, chamomile tea, lemon balm tea, essential oil, or herbal bath products.
- The information in this article should not replace the advice of your medical practitioner.
About the Author Diane Kennedy Snyder is an Herb Specialist and herbal product designer.