German chamomile flower (Matricaria recutita)

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GERMAN CHAMOMILE FLOWER (MATRICARIA RECUTITA):

Matricaria chamomilla (Matricaria recutita), commonly known as chamomile (also spelled camomile), German chamomile, Hungarian chamomile (kamilla), wild chamomile or scented mayweed,is an annual plant of the composite family Asteraceae. Matricaria chamomilla is the most popular source of the herbal product chamomile, although other species are also used as chamomile.

The word chamomile comes from the Greekchamaimēlon” meaning “earth-apple“, which is derived from “chamai” meaning “on the ground” and “mēlon” meaning “apple“. It is so called because of the apple – like scent of the plant.

Matricaria  chamomilla has a branched, erect and smooth stem, which grows to a height of 15 – 60 cm. The long and narrow leaves are pinnate and tripinnate. The flowers are borne in paniculata flower heads (capitulo). The white ray florets are furnished with a ligule, while the disc florets are yellow. The hollow receptacle is swollen and lacks scales. The flowers bloom in early to midsummer, and have a strong, aromatic smell. it will live more than two years.

Matricaria chamomilla can be found near populated areas all over Europe and temperate Asia, and it has been widely introduced in temperate North America and Australia. It often grows near roads, around landfills, and in cultivated fields as a weed, because the seeds require open soil to survive. German chamomile will tolerate many soils, but prefers a sandy, well-drained soil with a pH of 7,0 – 7,5 and full sun.

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