Annual. What could be more soothing than curling up at bedtime with a good book and a cup of chamomile tea made fresh from your garden? A staple of any herb garden, the dried daisy-like flowers are easy to grow for a delicious calming apple-scented tea. The flowers can be dried for floral arrangements, pressed for crafts, or woven into charming wreaths, and their edible petals can be tossed into salads. A beautiful herb to grow in the vegetable garden, chamomile enhances the growth of cucumbers and onions, and attracts beneficial insects. Drought tolerance makes it a great choice for dry sunny areas. Self-sows in ideal conditions.
When to plant outside: Sow in early spring, as soon as soil can be worked OR late fall when soil is too cold for seed to germinate (seed benefits from cold exposure).
When to start inside: 8-10 weeks before last spring frost.
Special Germination Instructions: Seeds are very small and should be scratched into the ground just below the soil surface. Chamomile can be planted in rows, but looks best in mass groupings.
Harvesting: Pick flowers when fully opened and dry on a screen covered with cheesecloth in a cool, dark well-ventilated area. Plants may also be hung upside down to dry.