This year I’ve had a few people ask me for Roman chamomile (lawn chamomile) plants in bulk- like 20 or so. And I, astute business woman that I am, tell them that I don’t have that many and they’d be better off sowing seeds.
To follow on with my astute business woman theme – instead of jumping onto this obvious need and making sure I have bulk quantities of Roman chamomile available, I’m going to tell you exactly how to go about growing your own. Let me empower you!
It really is very easy, but only if you know a couple of tricks that I’m going to let you in on…
These instructions as such, are relevant for both German and Roman chamomile.
To learn more about chamomile, why you should grow it, difference between types and uses, go to my article here.
If you have seed already you’ll notice that it is really fine. (Seeds are available at Kings seeds). Trick #1 Mix the seed with sand or if you have no sand, a wee bit of your fine seed raising mix. Sprinkle this onto your seed raising tray (that is already filled with seed raising mix and pre-moistened). It will now be evenly distributed- no fiddly seed wrangling to be done. Cover very lightly with seed raising mix or vermiculite if you have it. Give it a spray and leave in a sunny sheltered spot.
Don’t let the seeds dry out, spray daily (just water eh!). Within seven days or so you should be starting to get a tray of greenery. You want to keep them in their tray until they start looking quite ferny. Trick #2 it’s to your advantage if they get a bit root bound at the bottom of the tray, so don’t be in too much of a hurry to move them on.
Whilst your seeds are growing you need to sort out the area where you’re going to be planting them.
- German Chamomile; Get it weed free and don’t enrich the soil too much, if at all. Unless of course you want floppy stems, which trust me you don’t – makes for very tedious harvesting. More info on growing German chamomile can be found here… where I also happen to sell the plants themselves.
- Roman Chamomile; Weed like your life depends on it, then leave to see if you get another flush of weeds- then get those buggers out because trying to weed an established chamomile lawn is a real bitch – especially if its grass or buttercup coming up.
Right. Everything ready? Here’s Trick #3… With a knife you’re going to cut up your tray of seedlings into about 1 inch blocks.
You can do this within your tray (easiest if you have a large tray) or gently tip your tray up and lay your whole block down and cut from here. It’s at this point you’ll see why it’s good to have roots a wee bit bound up.
Now it’s just a matter of planting those puppies out, for German chamomile (as pictured) go for about 30cm apart. Roman about 20cm apart, don’t worry, they’ll join hands soon enough and you’ll have a scrummy lawn to lie on in no time! (For more info on growing Roman chamomile go to my plant listing here.) If possible do your planting out on an overcast day.