I have written about German Chamomile previously. Roman Chamomile is considered a safe oil to use on children and excellent for emotional issues.
Family: Asteraceae, Compositae
Synonyms: English chamomile, garden chamomile, true chamomile
Aroma: Sweet, hay-like, herbaceous scent with a hint of apples.
Colour: Pale yellow.
Plant: Bushy feathery leaves on a 25cm long stem containing a single flower. The flowers are larger than those of German chamomile.
Main Growing Areas: Italy, France, England, USA.
Major Constituents: a-pinene, camphene, sabinene, methallyl angelate.
Interesting snippets: Roman chamomile has a long history as a healing herb. It has been used by the Greeks, Romans and Moors.
In Tudor England it was known as the ‘plant’s physician’ as it was believed to encourage the good health of nearby plants.
Part of Plant used / Extraction: Flower heads / steam distillation. 5kg of fresh flowers yields approximately 1kg of dried flowers. This yields about 1% oil when distilled.
Roman chamomile is an expensive oil because it is very labour intensive. The harvest season lasts about two and a half months with the flowers being harvested every two weeks. The percentage of oil obtained from each distillation is also very low. You can buy good quality Roman chamomile in a 3 to 5% dilution in jojoba. This makes the oil very affordable.
Therapeutic actions: Teething pain and colic in children. Menstrual pain, muscular aches and pains. Indigestion and nausea. Use in a blend to massage the abdomen / stomach.
Emotional and Spiritual: Nervous tension, stress, tension headaches, anxiety and insomnia. Considered a calming and relaxing oil. Helpful to settle children who have nightmares or insomnia. Try combining with lavender or mandarin.
Joni Keim Loughran and Ruah Bull write that Roman chamomile gives us a calm acceptance of our own limitations.
Fragrant Change Healing Card: I treat myself gently and lovingly especially when those around me don’t.
Contemplations for the Soul Card:
Are you feeling let down by someone or impatient like a child waiting for something to happen?
Are you feeling grumpy, discontented or frustrated about some issue in your life?
Perhaps you have let others walk all over you in an effort to win their love or approval.
It’s time to let go of the worry, tears, pain, hurt, resentment and anxiety that has been plaguing you.
Consider if it is worth keeping those people in your life who do not respect you and if not let them go.
Forgive and be gentle with yourself for being fooled by someone or something.
It’s time to trust again and ask for the help and support you need.
Safety: Non-irritating, non-sensitizing although there have been rare cases of contact dermatitis.
Battaglia S, The Complete Guide To Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion, Australia (1995)
Hodges C. Contemplations for the Soul (2016)
Hodges C, Fragrant Change Healing Cards (2015)
Keim Loughran J, Bull R, Aromatherapy & Subtle energy techniques, Frog Books (2000)
Kerr J, Chamomile Essential Oil Profile. Aromatherapy Today, Vol.6 (1998)