German Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) Flowerheads

Blooming chamomile flowers with bright yellow centers and white petals, daisy-likeView Full Resolution

Closeup of flowerheads of chamomile plants in bloom. These flowers have an appearance and shape typical for the Asteracea (aster or composite) family: what looks like a single "flower" is actually a compound flower consisting of numerous tiny flowers.

The "petals" are actually "ray florets", consisting of a single large disk with other flower parts at the base, and serve the primary purpose of making the flowers more showy, to attract pollinators. The disc at the center of the flowerhead consists of numerous "disk florets", each of which produces an individual seed after pollination.

To make chamomile tea, the flowerheads, primarily the discs (the rays usually drop off), are dried.

This image is featured in our article on Chamomile Tea and Sleep.

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Alex Zorach

RateTea Editor

Joined Sep. 1st, 2009.

Photographer Credit

© Eran Finkle

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CC BY 2.0

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