Everyone talks about drinking chamomile tea to help get to sleep. You can buy it in stores in the herbal tea aisle under a host of different names but the one ingredient they all include to make you feel relaxed and sleepy is chamomile.
Chamomile can be easily grown from seeds. In fact, we sell common chamomile seeds and ship them all over the country.
Chamomile is an herb that looks just like daisy flowers. You may have some in your yard thinking they are daisies. The difference between the two is that chamomile flowers have a very sweet, pineapply smell to them and daisies do not.
In addition to helping you relax and sleep, chamomile has other medicinal properties. For instance, it is used for the following gardening and medicinal purposes:
So if you are growing chamomile, you want to pick just the flowers. The flowers have the medicinal properties in them. The leaves are not toxic and you can consume them, but they don't have what the flowers have. Pick them when the white petals are flat in late morning after the dew is gone.
To harvest, pinch the flowers off. Do not pull as you may ruin the plant. The more flowers you pick, the more flowers the plant will produce.
Rinse off the flowers and either dry them in your food dehydrator or on a screen. Be sure to dry them completely, turning them around so they don't know grow mold on them.
This is a versatile herb. So you can collect and dry the blossoms as noted above. You can also squeeze the essential oils from them with an essential oil press like we have.
Of course, the main thing this herb is known for is to help you relax and go to sleep so let's get to the easy chamomile tea recipe below.
It is best to have a teapot and a tea infuser. You can use a saucepan to boil the water if you don't have a teapot. You will need a tea infuser to keep all of the loose tea pieces from floating around in the water. An infuser is one of those sterling silver balls with tiny holes in that let water in and flavor out into the water without letting the loose chamomile flower pieces out.
You can use dried chamomile flower pieces or freshly picked chamomile flowers.
For one cup of hot tea, you will need:
Place the filled infuser into a large cup or mug and pour boiling water over the infuser. Let it steep for at least five minutes for maximum flavor. Then remove. Add the tea pieces to your compost pile just like you would with your coffee grounds. Have a good sleep!
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