There is a 'scentless mayweed' that is a different plant to chamomile however they look very similar. The defining factors are that chamomile has a strong smell and hollowed centre to the flower, whereas scentless mayweed is not hollow and is well... scentless. Hence chamomile gaining the name scented mayweed.
The flowers: tea, tincture, compress, salve, infused oil, soak, mouthwash
Season To Harvest
Flowers - Late spring and summer
Harvested throughout spring and summer, chamomile will keep producing more flowers throughout the season. Easiest to pick in the morning when the stems are sturdy and don't break away easily. This leaves less time sorting through your harvest to get rid of any rogue stems or leaves.
Energetically, chamomile is cooling and drying.
Perhaps best known as a calming herb, chamomile is a powerful nervine that soothes the soul, eases anxiety and helps you relax. With a slight sedative effect she can even help you drift off to sleep. She is considered especially helpful for anger and impatience that can surface when stressed.
As an antispasmodic chamomile is often used to ease menstrual cramping or spasming muscles. Essentially relaxing the body as well as the mind.
She's also a mild bitter meaning she can help with digestive issues like heartburn, bloating, stomach ulcers, diarrhoea, IBS, constipation and indigestion, and is often taken as a tea after meals. She's safe for children to use and has been shown to aid with colic symptoms in infants when applied topically.
Chamomile is an anti-inflammatory herb that contains some vulnerary (wound healing) properties and can be used topically for skin irritations such as rashes, abrasions, cuts, lesions, insect bites and stings, as well as for joint pain and inflammation.
Magic & folklore
Chamomile is one of the oldest known medicinal herbs and the Egyptians dedicated it to their sun gods. Perhaps because the little yellow domes look like suns, or that the flower thrives best when in direct sunlight.
As a sun herb, drinking chamomile tea is thought to increase positive energy and restore vitality.
In ancient Greece it was believed that chamomile was one of the herbs grown in the garden of Hecate, the Greek goddess of witchcraft and was also known as the “blood of Hestia,” the Greek goddess of the hearth and home. Perhaps for the little fire or sun that chamomile represents and her seemingly magical healing properties.
Chamomile was also known as the plant's physician as placing chamomile next to a sick plant seemed to heal it.
Love Em xx
Disclaimer - this is from my personal research. I cannot encourage the use of any medicinal plant without seeking medical advice first.