How and When to Harvest Chamomile

Chamomile is one among my should have herbs within the tea backyard.  Not solely does it add stunning, cheery little blossoms to the backyard, however it additionally makes a scrumptious comforting tea. On this publish, I share how and when to reap chamomile in addition to tips on how to dry it and brew it right into a cup of tea.

German chamomile prepared for harvest.

Chamomile makes a soothing, comforting tea excellent for upset tummies, nervousness or sleepy time. I bear in mind my mother making us chamomile tea if we had a light fever, upset abdomen or couldn’t get to sleep. It’s a practice I’ve carried on with my youngsters who ask for a cup of chamomile in the event that they’re feeling a little bit below the climate.

What A part of Chamomile to Harvest

Not like many different herbs, when harvesting chamomile, it's the blossoms you need to gather, not the stems, leaves or roots.  These beautiful white daisy like flowers are all you need to harvest for chamomile tea.

When to Harvest Chamomile

Harvesting chamomile is a steady exercise, since chamomile flowers will bloom all summer season lengthy, particularly if picked commonly. So, prepare to reap chamomile blossoms all summer season! Good factor, it’s simple to do.

Chamomile flowers are prepared to reap when they're at full bloom. Ideally, the blossoms are open to their fullest, simply earlier than the tiny white petals start to droop down. It’s not unsafe to reap the blossoms in the event that they’re a little bit untimely or a little bit droopy, it’s simply that they’re helpful properties might not be at their fullest and most potent state.  

The most effective time of day to reap chamomile, or every other herb, is within the morning after any dew has dried and earlier than the noon solar has began to beat down on the blossoms.

How one can Harvest Chamomile

Right here’s a video giving a fast demo.

When choosing the flowers, use your fingers as a comb to get simply the flower head.  Then merely pluck the flower head off the stem whereas utilizing your different hand to carry the stem of the plant.

Or, pinch off every flower head utilizing your forefinger and thumb simply beneath the flower head.

Collect all of the blossoms you'll be able to. You’ll have to come back again a number of instances over the summer season to gather blossoms after they’re at full bloom.

By the way in which, if you happen to don’t harvest your chamomile blossoms, count on a little bit self-seeding to happen. Chamomile is an annual that self-seeds fairly effectively. In actual fact, I typically go away a number of blossoms to go to seed on goal so I get volunteer chamomile vegetation the next yr. And I go away a number of blossoms to dry out after which harvest them for the seed. I’ve had fairly good success rising chamomile from saved seeds.

After the harvest. The extra you decide, the extra blossoms develop. I used to be capable of decide one other bowl full the following day!

How one can Dry Chamomile

Gently shake the flowers and look them over to take away any bugs or grime that could be on the flower heads.

If you want, you'll be able to wash the flowers in a basin of water. Drain effectively and gently pat dry. (I don’t at all times wash the blossoms.)

Air Dry – Unfold out the flowers in a single layer and permit them to dry for 1 to 2 weeks in a darkish, heat, dry house.

Dehydrate – Dry flowers on a lined dehydrator tray to forestall tiny dried blossoms from falling by way of the mesh. To keep away from blossoms from blowing off the tray, place a mesh liner on prime of the chamomile flowers.  Set the dehydrator on it’s lowest setting (95°F or 35°C) and dry for 12 to 18 hours. Delicate herbs and flowers ought to at all times be dehydrated on the lowest settings for optimum outcomes.

As soon as the flowers are completely dried and cooled, retailer in a effectively sealed glass jar till subsequent yr’s chamomile harvest. All the time retailer dried herbs out of direct warmth or daylight to finest protect the colour, taste and medicinal properties.  

How one can Make Tea with Contemporary or Dried Chamomile

Dried Chamomile: use 2-Three teaspoons of dried chamomile per 1 cup of boiling water. Steep for 2-5 minutes.

Contemporary Chamomile: use 6-Eight teaspoons of recent chamomile per 1 cup of boiling water. Steep for 2-5 minutes.

Do you ever drink chamomile tea? Do you utilize it for a particular goal or do you simply take pleasure in it? If that's the case, have you ever ever tried rising and harvesting your personal chamomile?

I’d like to see your chamomile blossoms. Take a photograph, publish it on Instagram and tag #getgettys so I can see it and prefer it!

Signal as much as get articles by Getty delivered to your inbox. You’ll get recipes, sensible ideas and nice meals data like this. Getty is a Skilled Residence Economist,  speaker and author placing good meals on tables and agendas.  She is the writer of Manitoba’s best-selling Prairie Fruit Cookbook, Founding father of Fruit Share, a mother and veggie gardener.