German chamomile is also known as scented mayweed and wild chamomile. It’s a hardy annual with pleasantly scented flowers, and is primarily grown for medicinal use and teas. Learn how to grow organic chamomile in containers or in the herb garden. Continue reading for some tips on how to grow chamomile from seed.

Matricaria recutita
Family: Asteraceae


Season & Zone
Season: Warm season
Exposure: Full sun

Sow from the last frost date through early summer, either indoors or direct where it is to grow. If starting indoors, be sure to harden seedlings off before they are transplanted. Optimal temperature for germination: 19°C (65°F). Bottom heat speeds germination.

Sow seeds 1cm (½”) deep. Keep moist, and thin or transplant to 10-15cm (4-6″) apart. Seeds should sprout in 10-14 days.

Chamomile is a fairly adaptable plant, but does best in full sun in well-drained soil. Water well in dry weather, and deadhead thoroughly to prevent self-sowing. Otherwise, leave half the flowers unharvested and self-sowing is likely.

Harvest the small, fragrant flowers when they are fully open. Use the petals fresh or dry. The leaves can be gathered in spring to early summer and used fresh or dry.

Companion Planting
Chamomile attracts hoverflies and wasps. Plant near onions to improve their flavour.

More on Companion Planting.