This blog post is on growing and harvesting Dyers Chamomile (Anthemis tinctoria). Dyers Chamomile is a weak perennial plant. Weak perennial means that the plant may or may not survive and come back next year. It’s from a family of daisy so the flowers look a bit like a daisy.
I am growing dyers Chamomile not for food but for fabric dyeing. It is long-lasting when to use with mordants. Here is one of my old blog posts on using mordants in fabric dyeing. The flowers produce lovely yellow colours. The flowers also print well on fabrics.
It is also possible to obtain yellow colour from tea chamomile. I have yet to try it so I can’t say much about growing it. There is not much information on whether this flower is edible or not.
Growing and harvesting Dyers Chamomile flowers
To grow dyers Chamomile is to grow from seeds. I bought mine from King’s seed last year. I harvested them at end of the growing season in October. It survived outdoors in the winter. Come in the warmer season once they start growing out of the pots I put them on the ground. This year the flowers are blooming very well.
It is also possible to start sowing the seeds in March and plant out as soon as the risk of frost is over. Grow the dyer’s Chamomile in a sunny spot so it yields lots of flowers. Water regularly. Some well-drained soil would help as well. It doesn’t like transplanting too much so try not to move them once it’s established.
Harvest the flowers regularly so that it yields more flowers. The flowers stay open and fresh for quite a long time (about 2 weeks) on the plant. The stem and leaves do yield colours as well but different colours so keep them separate. If there is too much produce to use up at a time. Dry them up in a food dryer or hot sun. Then make sure to keep in a tight container as bugs will feast on the dried flowers and plants.