I’ve decided to do a large series of herbal histories and medicinal/magical uses! Checkout my Tarragon and Basil posts as well and stay tuned!
“Chamomile” comes from Greek meaning “ground apple” because
of its fragrance. The Romans used it as incense, and the ancient Egyptians used
it for cooling fevers; they dedicated it to the sun god, Ra. To the Anglo
Saxons, it was one of the nine sacred herbs.
Chamomile prefers sandy, slightly acidic soil as well as direct sunlight, but if it gets too hot too often, it prefers shade. To harvest, cut the flower heads as they form and hang or leave on cloth to dry. In tea, dry chamomile goes a longer way than fresh chamomile.
MEDICINAL: *Chamomile may cause allergic reactions in those allergic to ragweed. Do not use if you are on blood thinners, as some constituents may have an anticoagulant action*
2 tsp Chamomile flowers in one mug of boiling water. Cover and steep five minutes. It tastes bitter, so honey, sugar, and milk can be added to improve taste.
Chamomile tea soothes the mind and body to prepare for sleep. It is safe for use with children and helps with teething stress and colic; to soothe a fretful baby, place them in a warm bath/infusion of chamomile (caution: babies are very sensitive to skin irritation, so make sure that the child isn’t allergic beforehand). For anxiety, insomnia, and nervousness, drink before bedtime (can be mixed with milk and honey). Infuse chamomile flowers in warm milk for a skin cleanser that fights acne and moisturizes. Use once a week, and within a week of making.
Chamomile is an antispasmodic and a muscle relaxer; it is good for reducing inflammation and muscle spasms. It is especially useful with menstrual cramps (drink two to three cups daily). When used topically, it can speed the healing of cuts, scrapes, blisters, and burns; it is also helpful with rashes, eczema, and inflammation of the skin. To treat, add it to a salve, rinse the affected area with tea, or add a few drops of essential oil to bath water. FOR BURNS: Do not use ointment/essential oil. Use a light lotion or gentle compress; oils hold in body heat and don’t let the burns heal, and the strength of the essential oil may irritate the burn. Eye inflammations can be soothed with a cool compress or a soaked chamomile tea bag.
It aids in digestion, soothes the bowels, aids with morning sickness, and relieves restlessness associated with pregnancy. To help with any of the above, drink a cup of tea on an empty stomach first thing in the morning, hot or cold.
If another plant of any kind is weak or ailing, place a chamomile plant near it to help it thrive; it can also be watered with an infusion of chamomile.
Chamomile is used in spells of money, peace, love, tranquility, and purification. It is a good protection herb; to keep unwanted entities or energies from passing through, use an infusion to wash thresholds (doors and windows). Sprinkle the powdered flowers around you or your home to remove spells cast against you and prevent fires/lightning. Use it in a ritual bath before performing protective spells. A bath can also increase your attractiveness to the opposite sex, or be used to release grief, pain, anger, or loss. Washing hands with chamomile water before betting/gambling will improve luck. Add in sachets for luck and money or tuck some into a wallet to increase cash flow. Place chamomile flowers near a weak or sick person to ease the sickness. Use in meditation incense. In a banishing ritual, sprinkle an infusion of chamomile around you and wash up with the cold tea to keep negativity away from you. In candle magic: anoint a green candle with the tea or oil for good luck and money, and anoint a black candle for banishment or exorcism.
Other names: Ground apple, Whig plant, Maythen
Deities: Cernunnos, Ra, Helios, Jupiter, Lugh
Helps to cleanse and invigorate the throat chakra (5th).
Roman chamomile, perennial, about 4 to 12 inches tall, daisy-like flowers with turned down petals, has an apple-like fragrance. Usually used in Britain/UK.
German chamomile, annual, up to 20 inches tall, daisy-like flowers. Usually used in the USA.
Both can be used the same and both work well.