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February Herb of the Month- German Chamomile

German Chamomile: Matricaria chamomilla

Chamomile is an easily grown annual. Its name comes from the Greek meaning “ground apple” this is likely because of its aroma. Chamomile has a slight apple scent to it.


Description:

Chamomile is a part of the Asteraceae family. Although it is native to parts of Europe it is easily grown and found on most continents. Chamomile grows 6 to 24 inches tall. The leaves are very identifiable by their feather like appearance. The flower is similar to a daisy in shape but is much smaller.

Parts Used:

Flowering tops


Actions/Uses:

Most commonly in Western Herbal Medicine Chamomile is used as a sedative. Most commonly in tea form. It also has many other key actions such as being anti-inflammatory, Carminative, pain relief, antispasmodic and anti-anxiety to name a few.

It has been used to ease digestive issues like cramping, bloating, indigestion and gas. It has shown to be helpful with ulcers as well. Its bitter flavor when brew strong is a great digestive stimulant.

Chamomile is used for an array of skin conditions like soothing eczema, rashes, hemorrhoids, small wounds, acne and sunburn. It can be applied topically in a salve or as an infused oil for the skin or bath

Chamomile is also found in many hair rinse recipes.

As you can see by the many qualities of Chamomile it's no wonder why it is in so many of our tea blends.


Folklore:

Chamomile has an extensive history as a medical and spiritual plant. Uses of this plant date back to ancient Roman, Greek and Egyptian times.

Romans used this herb for skin infections and respiratory issues. It was scattered on the floor of banquets as perfume or burned as an incense.

Greeks like the Romans would use Chamomile to fragrance the air. They also used it to heal intestinal, nervous and women’s ailments.

Egyptians associated this herb with their sun god Re and used in rituals and ceremonies. They also used this herb in their skin care routines, hair care and other skin ailments.


Flower Essence:

As a flower essence Chamomile brings emotional and inner peace. Chamomile works hard to bring the emotional body back into alignments when emotional tension and irritability take over. It is an excellent flower essence to take on its own or in a blend.



Cautions:

Some people do have allergic reactions to chamomile. It may interact with blood thinners and sedatives, consult your physician for more information. Overall chamomile is considered quite a safe herb to add to your garden and herbal life.

This beautiful plant self seeds so well it will be with you year after year. I hope chamomile will find a place in your garden.

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