Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Plant of the Month-December 08

Choosing a Plant of the Month for December has been extremely difficult this year. While there are still some flowers blooming in the garden, they are all beginning to pass by or are a plant I have chosen as Plant of the Month before. I suppose the pansies might qualify, they are still blooming, as are some mums. Actually I was all set to settle on alyssum (a good plant though a bit weather beaten) when I spotted some chamomile blooming in the garden. Yeah!
Chamomile is a cool weather bloomer in my garden. It starts growing in the fall from seeds laid from the previous spring's blooms. Normally chamomile does not bloom until February or so around here, but this one plant stunned me by blooming early. It should bloom straight through until next April or so, but even if it is set back by some prolonged freezes, snow, whatever, it will be okay by me. Its blooms are so welcomed on this frigid day in December I can forgive it for suffering a bit from the cold, just like me. The welcoming sight of the new blooms and the fact chamomile is such a stalwart in my garden is the reason why I have chosen it as December's Plant of the Month.

in the garden....

Now what do you suppose I might have blooming in January? Probably nothing. We'll shall see. Wish me luck!


  1. Good morning! What a pleasant surprise to see blooms in December. The chamomile is certainly a sweet flower... is this the same variety that I have in my tea when I can't sleep? Gail

  2. I was going to say...chamomile has a soothing side to it's herb. Pretty flower. We have the wild type everywhere, seems to grow with adversion, between rock, gravel. Even that little bloom is cute.

  3. Hi Tina, I hope there'll be a surprise waiting for you in the garden in January! Because snow/freeze is something that I really don't understand (but reading about it with great interest, always!) the possibility of blooms doesn't seem far-fetched! Good luck!!

  4. I wonder whether Camomile would flower in December here in the UK - I suspect not but then I suppose it depends on how mild it is

  5. Hi Tina-I think chamomile has the happiest looking little flower-don't you? I can't believe you found a bloom. Brrr, it's cold here today..nothing could be blooming here except for the pansies! Have a good day!

  6. Hi Tina, wow what a find! And the yellow button mum is still giving color here too. I am hoping Nan Ondra can come up with an ID on it, I sent her some. Might you have to have an indoor something next month? That's about all that is blooming here even now. I love that chamomile too, I think it is the roman, or perennial creeping one rather than the annual tall one, right?

  7. What a sweet little flower, so brave to be blooming right now. I am happy to enjoy your bloom as I don't even want to venture outside!

  8. I had the loveliest edging of Chamomile along our front path. My husband, in his zest for removing weeds that sprout between the flagstones, sprayed vinegar too close to my little plants and they all died.

    Chamomile is a favorite and I'll grow more. I just love the little flowers.

  9. Have you ever tried tea with your chamomile? The flower looks like a welcome bit of warmth in the late fall. Think evergreen for next month!

  10. Good Morning All,
    Tina, what a lovely little flower. I don't recall having seen it before. It must be very hardy.
    I still have petunias blooming. And another that I can't recall just now. It has blue flowers. A couple pintas.
    Have a wonderful day all.

  11. Hi Tina,

    I grow it too, I have 3 plants and I have grown them as short climbers up the side of a bower. I took the photo this morning as it looked so pretty with its sugar coated frosted look. It is a David Austin Rose and as you say, the fragrance is lovely. If you like this one, have a look at 'William Shakepeare 2000' next time you are plant shopping, it's even more beautiful and the fragrance is divine.


  12. Good morning all! I really must get up earlier.

    Gail, This is what I believe to be German chamomile. I am not sure if that is what they use in tea, but I think so. I might someday try it out.

    Dawn, Chamomile is pretty hardy. The way I got it was thru a wildflower mix. The seeds took and I did NOT weed them out. I have a post coming up on that very subject to explain.

    Kanak, Can't imagine not knowing snow whereas it is the opposite for you. Such a small world! I hope I have some blooms-hate to go inside as I don't consider that in the garden....

    PatientGardener, It has been a weird year. Daffodils with blooms and other strange things, so who knows? Chamomile might bloom there. I bet it surely blooms in February/March though. Seems like this would be an English flower to me.

    Linda, Pansies were a choice too. Let me tell you it was not easy this month. Stay warm!

    Frances, That will be so great if Nan can ID the yellow button. I tried to no avail. This is the annual chamomile-German I think. Not perennial. It sprouts in the fall and usually blooms in early early spring. This was an early one this year for sure!

    Cindy, It was a treat for sure. I am venturing out-in the rain I might add. The same that might give you snow. Stay warm!

    Cameron, You know many don't realize what this plant is when it sprouts. Your husband had no idea I am sure. I got mine in a wildflower pack. Sprinkle some around and I bet you'll get it all back.

    Dave, I am wracking my brain to see what I can come up with next month. The choices are not looking good at all.

    Lola, I have found the chamomile likes a bit of a chill, though it should grow down there. Get you a pack of wildflower seeds and sprinkle them around. I have a post coming showing the seedlings. That is the trick! Knowing them.

  13. Zoe, I just got so excited seeing the Falstaff. You see I do not grow many roses and the only reason this one is still here because of its tolerance for me! Ha! I will look for William Shakespeare 2000 sometime just to check it out. You just can't beat those David Austin roses and for good reason!

  14. Gee, I've never grown chamomile, so I never thought about it blooming. What a pretty little flower!

  15. Hi, Tina--Gorgeous little flower. German chamomile doesn't do great here--I think it's the humid summers. Anyway, even though German and Roman chamomile are unrelated (Roman is Chamaemelum nobile, German is Matricaria recutita), both are used in teas and for aroma therapy and both with reputedly the same effect (relaxation). You can also use it as a rinse to brighten blonde hair. I love chamomile products--just wish I could grow it more successfully.

    You know what I found blooming yesterday? Weigela! It was a sale plant--maybe it's insane . . .

  16. What a happy little flower for December, Tina. I've tried to get it to grow in the ground and failed, but a plant in one of the herb troughs looks alive.

    But I don't know if it's the perennial kind or a lived over annual! Snapdragons & alyssum sometimes act like perennials here.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  17. Hope the Jimster feels better soon. Also hope he does not have what I had. I did not eat one thing Monday. Yesterday I forced myself to eat a grilled cheese and a slice of toast. Today I actually find food a little appealing.I also tried to drink a Pepsi yesterday but could'nt. Now you know I am sick when I can't drink a Pepsi.

    Lola I hope the pain has laid off today and you are able to do what you wanna do.

  18. At least you still have blooms. We've had snow, which was lovely, but now it's all turned to rain and mud. Your bright flowers cheered me up. Thanks!

  19. My alyssum is still blooming its little heart out! I don't have chamomile at the moment. I will be getting some though!

  20. Hi, Tina. I would be happy to have ANYTHING blooming in my garden in December. I've never grown chamomile before, but I might look into it to see if it might grow in my Illinois garden. Can you harvest it? I used to drink a lot of chamomile tea:)

    Congratulations on your daughter's engagement. Looks like you had a great visit. I understand about the ban on blogging; I'm still in Arizona, but the few times I've had to read blogs were early in the morning while she was still sleeping:) Looking forward to catching up when I return.

  21. Hey all! Great day to be in the garden today.

    Susan, It is so easy-but you have to recognize the seedlings as they sprout in the fall, bloom in early spring then go away in the summer. That is the trick!

    Cosmo, I am pretty sure this is the German, based on how it looks when all in bloom-though I don't know! Thanks for the info on it all. Do you suppose it would work wonders on my gray hair and make me a blond again? lol Your weigela is confused-so many are this year. Wonder why? It has to be your plant of the month then?

    Annie, The chamomile would love growing in the troughs. A great way to grow it indeed. I just can't fathom your weather. Sometimes I think it like ours then other times I think it is much milder. You guys in your area grow SO much!

    Mom, I went and raked my neighbor's pine needles, asked them first and they said their son was home with a stomach bug. The same thing Jimmy has! And you too! It must be hitting hard and everywhere this year. I do hope he is better so he can go to school tomorrow. Haven't seen him all day so he is resting. A good thing.

    Sarah, You are welcomed. And for the record, I must say I LOVE junk flowers-so whimsical and innovative:) The snow turning to mud and getting dirty is one part of snow and winters I never liked in Maine. It is fun at first, then it gets SO old. The BBB worked well, I liked your wrap up. Next year if you do it (I'm sure you will, maybe a badge for blogs to spread the word around?)

    Brenda, Isn't that alyssum great? I simply love it, especially its sweet fragrance. The chamomile is easy! You'll like it too.

    Rose, You do relax and visit with your daughter. Sometimes we bloggers get so wrapped up and must not feel like we HAVE to blog (hard compulsion to beat I know) as the blogs will be okay. No need to catch up either from my part. You would be too swamped! Just say hi when you are settled in again. I am liking your posts while you are away very much. Ubiquitous indeed! I just like saying the word!

  22. Tina - no one can fathom Austin weather today! It was 81°F yesterday afternoon, then 40 mph winds, 33°F, sleet and a little snow last night with possible 26°F tonight.

    Who knows what plants will be okay tomorrow.


  23. Humid and nasty outside this morning with expected temp of 76 degrees! I was in the yard first thing this morning trying to beat the rain by blowing and mulching leaves after doing the same thing yesterday! Arggg, I will be glad when they all fall from the trees but after all, the calendar says it is still Fall so I must deal with Fall a bit longer....

    I love sipping on Chamomile Tea by the fireplace to take the chill off my body on cold nights! Should be doing just that soon with this cold front passes. Chamomile has a pretty little flower! I sprinkled a package of wild flower mix the first year of the flower garden and may have to do that again this spring....

    Hope everyone kills those bugs going around.... Get well soon!

  24. It looks like my Viburnum might be blooming in January. You can use that if you want Tina. ;) Great choice for December. I didn't realize that Chamomile bloomed in December.

  25. Hi, everyone who's sick--chamomile tea is really comforting, and its mild enough that even people with stomach flu can usually tolerate it. But I've never had much luck making my own--and it's pretty easy to find in grocery stores. Tina, it sure sounds like you have the annual (German) one, as you said. Wiegela will NOT be my plant of the month, since I think this is a Lowe's orphan that's just glad to let its roots spread a bit.

  26. Tina, Cosmo is right about the benefits of chamomile, especially as an essential oil. Find a reliable (organically grown, steam-distilled) source. It's great for aromatherapy and mild enough to be used topically for soothing inflammation/pain. I've been using it (Roman and blue) in my own blend of oils for lower back pain. Hope your family feels better.

  27. Perfect choice Tina, the Camomile is lovely especially in the month of December! LOL Tyra

    New Post from Tyra - Leufstabruk

  28. Annie, I saw all the posts talking of the strange weather in your area. How exciting is a bit of snow? Strange.

    Skeeter, Chamomile is cool. I think I have seen the tea before but not drunk it. Stay warm and comfy!

    Racquel, It will be amazing if your viburnum blooms next month. What a treat! I'd have to transplant it here to TN to use it though-is that okay:)?

    Cosmo, Yes I think you are absolutely correct. I am sure this is German as it is annual for sure. Thanks so much for the help!

    Walk2Write, I saw where chamomile is used in essential oils and immediately thought of you. I haven't used mine yet-but will. Can't wait to try them out. Thanks again! Jimmy is better today-back in school.

    Thanks Tyra!

  29. Boy, what crazy weather we're having. Snowing in New Orleans of all things. Rained most all day here. The temp dropped over 10º in less than an hour. Had tornado warming out till 1:30. Thank goodness hurricane season is over.
    Tina, should I plant the wild flower seeds now or wait till Spring? It so happens I have a packet of wild flower seed. I had sown some a few yrs. back in my flag pole garden but only 1 kind came up. Since I'm STILL trying to redo that garden I'll be surprised if it come back.