In the Kitchen

How to Brew and Harvest Chamomile

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Todays post is all about How to Brew and Harvest Fresh Chamomile for Hot Tea or Cold Brew along with tips for growing.

chamomile flowers to be harvested for hot and cold brew tea

The sun is shinning, the veggies are coming in and the chamomile is ready for harvesting. Those happy buds are a joy to have in the garden. The scent of the flowers hit you when entering the back portion of our garden. They are such simple blooms to grow straight from seed and are ready to harvest in no time. I have decided to add a few more beds next time around. But for now a small patch will do. It is enough to fill a medium sized mason jar with tea that will last quite a while. Not too bad for one small patch.

Harvesting them makes me a little sad but the abundance of blooms should quickly fill back in and in the mean time we get to enjoy the delicious tea their flower heads produce. I have grown mine straight from directly sown seed in a small sunny patch of our garden. It is always a proud moment to harvest anything when grown this way for me. There is something significant about the success and process of having grown something from seed to harvest. It makes it all worthwhile.

I like to make both hot and cold brew tea. During warmer months the hot tea is soothing in the evening and during the hot summer days nothing is more refreshing them a cold glass of it. Below are two ways to enjoy your blooms.

Harvesting Your Chamomile

Chamomile is ready to harvest when the blooms are fully grown and open. There are combs you can purchase to harvest if you find hand picking them to painstaking. If you don’t have a comb or you have just a small amount of chamomile to harvest. You can pluck them individually by hand. Make sure to harvest only the blooms that are fully open and matured to ensure full flavor of your tea. To dry your harvest place them in a dehydrator for 12 hours on low or you can let them dry at room temperature for 3 days or so. Chamomile buds will shrink once dried and are ready for brewing when the bud is about half the size.

chamomile flowers for hot and cold brew tea
harvested chamomile tea flowers in a bowl

To Brew Hot Chamomile Tea

Boil Water. If possible use filtered water to make the tea taste better than tap water.

Put chamomile tea into the tea pot or glass bowl with the hot water.

Cover tea pot or bowl and allow it to steep until desired strength. I do mine for about 5 minutes but if you like it stronger then you can steep longer.

Strain chamomile solids with a fine mesh strainer and pour the hot tea into a tea cup. Sweeten if you like. Brewing a cup in the evening is a great way to relax before bed time. Chamomile if often used to promote sedative effects. The plant contains an antioxidant known as apigenin which can help muscle relaxation.

harvesting chamomile flowers for hot and cold brew tea

For Cold Brew Chamomile Tea

Place 4 teaspoons of Chamomile in side a pitcher or jar.

Pour in 4 cups of filtered water

Cover the pitcher and place in the refrigerator. Steeping an herbal tea like chamomile in a cold brew takes about 12-24 hours for full flavor.

Check your tea periodically to taste test it. Once it is to your liking, pour it through a mesh strainer to remove the loose tea. Or you can use an infuser and just remove that. If the tea is too strong you can simply add more cold water to dilute it down.

To sweeten your cold brew chamomile tea, make a simple syrup by heating up by mixing equal parts sugar and water in a sauce pan over medium heat to dissolve sugar into the water. Once ready simply pour in desired amount when the tea is at the preferred strength.

Tips for Growing Chamomile

  • Plant in a sunny spot, chamomile likes full sun exposure.
  • Easy to grow from seed and the seeds are easy to save from the plant as well. Be sure to keep a few of the flower heads to dry out for seeds when harvesting.
  • Store seeds in a cool dry place.
  • Seeds can be directly sown and sprout within 10-14 days.
  • Should be planted in well drained soil.
  • Flowering takes anywhere from 6 – 10 weeks.

I hope you have enjoyed todays post all about How to Brew and Harvest Chamomile.

Happy Harvesting!

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