Chamomile

by Regan Schwartz

Matricaria recutita

Energetics: warm, neutral, relaxing

Actions: stomachic, carminative, soothing nervine, sedative, antispasmodic, vulnerary

For many people, chamomile is one of the first herbs they ever work with.  It’s so widespread that many folks don’t even realize that they are doing herbalism when they make a cup of tea after dinner, before bed, or when they are feeling a bit stressed out.  But they are!

Chamomile is full of active volatile compounds and has an affinity for the digestive and nervous systems.  These attributes help it in its work as a gentle and effective nervine and digestive aid.  I work with chamomile in tea, tincture, hydrosol, steam, bath, oil, and salve, though I have given up on growing it in my sun soaked central Texas garden.  Topically, chamomile is soothing and anti-inflammatory, especially for folks with compromised skin barriers.  It shows up in my facial oils, bath soaks, steams, toners, serums, and overnight balm and I am ever grateful for its partnership.

Chamomile is an amazing, unassuming plant with an ancient relationship with humans and so many gifts to share.  Magically, it is associated with regeneration, healing, protection, peace, luck, and money.