News flash, chamomile tea taste nothing like the tea steeped from chamomile tea bags sold at the grocery store. It’s sad but true. If you have been buying chamomile tea bags at the grocery store (usually 10 in a pack) you have likely been sold a watered down version of the tastiest sweet tea in the world. In this post, I’m going to share with you that growing your own chamomile is as easy as leaving a tea bag in a garden and coming back the following spring! Let me share with you how to grow the best chamomile tea.
What does Chamomile Tea taste like
The best chamomile tea I have ever had came directly from my own garden. I planted some seeds one year and up came a small bush about the size of three soccer balls in a triangle tier. This plant produced enough chamomile flowers for me too dry half of a pint jar.
I treasured these chamomile flowers the entire winter not wanting to use it up too quickly. That was until I saw the chamomile plant coign up again the following spring. So I quickly began drinking chamomile tea every evening. It was the most delicious tea I had ever had.
True chamomile tea tastes sweet, like light honey. Some say the flavour is mild, but I think quite the opposite. The flavour is deeply fresh and sweet.
From experience, I can say that growing your own chamomile tea is not difficult at all. In fact, it is so easy that my mother-in-law got a bountiful chamomile plant by accident. One year, she left her evening tea out in the garden. When she stumbled upon the cup the following week, she dumped the chamomile tea bag directly into the garden for compost. Not thinking much of it and forgetting it entirely, she was surprised to find a plant coming up in her garden bed the following year. The chamomile tea bag filled with seeds, self seeded into a bountiful plant. It is a blessing that she did not weed the plant from the garden, but left it long enough to discover chamomile flowers!
I tell you this story because that is how easy it is to grow the best chamomile. Find an organic chamomile tea bag, steep it for tea, and toss it into your garden or a pot filled with soil.
Now, I know you may be thinking that I’m a hypocrite. I just told you that the chamomile tea bags from the grocery store is bland in comparison to a chamomile plant from your own garden. This is absolutely true. I believe that mass produced chamomile tea bags do not contain the most high quality chamomile. I concluded this with a simple taste test. If you are doubtful, you should test it for yourself. Find resources for buying truly organic chamomile tea later in this post if you cannot grow your own chamomile to preform this experiment.
In Spring, the chamomile plant begins to grow green foliage. Late spring, the plant produces daisy-like white flowers with the centre of the flower looking like bright yellow jelly-tots.
The plant grows easily and without much need of human care. After blooming for a few weeks, the green foliage turns light yellow and then brown to signify that the season for the plant is complete.
Chamomile Flower Varieties
Some Chamomile varieties flower longer than others. We grow 2 varieties from Baker Creek’s Heirloom Seed Company. The German Chamomile, which is an earlier variety that flowers for about 6-8 weeks. The Zloty Lan Chamomile, which flowers later and produced bigger flowers.
Resources about Herbs & Where to buy Chamomile Tea
Podcast about Herbs
I found a great introduction to herbs and their benefits in a recent podcast episode from the Simple Farmhouse Podcast with Lisa Bass and Arielle de Martinez. You can find the episode Using Herbs to Support your Health here.
Purchase Real Chamomile
If you cannot grow your own chamomile at this time, you can look to purchase some from herb farms local to you. Look into ordering from:
- Crystal Organic Farm
- Frontier Co-Op
- Suntrap Botanical
- Mountain Rose Herbs
- Foster Farm Botanicals
- Star-West Botanicals
Pin this Post
If you have passed the season for chamomile this year, pin this post to come back to next winter when it is time to plan your garden.
Other Tea Posts
How to grow, harvest and dry your own Lemon Balm Tea.
When and how to forage Nettle Leaf Tea and dry it for your loose leaf tea stash.
A few tasty recipes to enjoy Dandelion Tea.
Happy herb growing and tea making friends!