German Chamomile (Matricaria recutita)
Chamomile is an annual herb originally from Europe. It can be found growing along fence rows, roadsides, and in sunny open fields from Southern Canada to Northern U.S. west to Minnesota. The branched stem is somewhat erect, round, hollow, and grows to about 20 inches tall. The leaves are bipinnate, finely divided, light green and feathery. The flowers are daisy-like about 1 inch across and bloom from May to October.
Latin Name: Matricaria recutita
Common Names: Chamomile, Scented Mayweed
Plant Family: Asteraceae
Taste: Slightly bitter, sweet
Energy: Warm, Moist
Part Used: Flowers
German Chamomile Flowers are commonly used to make organic Chamomile tea.
As a tea: Pour 8 oz of boiling water over 1-2 tsp. of herb. Cover and steep 5-10 minutes, strain, and serve.
For Bath: Use up to 1 cup fresh or dried herb tied in linen bag. Place in tub with hot water let soak for 10 min. then add cold water until a comfortable temperature is reached. Do not add soap to bath, as it will coat your skin and not allow the Chamomile to penetrate.
When you have a cold or feel really bad, try drinking the tea while you're soaking in the bath.
Skin Care: German Chamomile is also an ingredient in skin care creams and lotions, relaxing bath blends and shampoos and conditioners. It is also known for accentuating highlights and lightening blonde hair.
Persons with allergies to other members of the Asteraceae family should exercise caution with chamomile. People who are allergic to plants in the daisy or aster family, including chrysanthemums and ragweed, may also have an allergic reaction to chamomile (usually a skin rash).
Chamomile infusions should not be used around the eyes.
Always consult your health care professional before using any herbal supplement.