German Chamomile Weed Management
Unfortunately, German Chamomile plants often suffer from weeds, which compete with them in terms of space, access to sunlight, water and nutrients. The presence of weeds will have a negative effect in the quantity of fresh plant material harvested as well as in the quantity and quality of essential oil. The presence of weeds at critical stages of plant development can reduce the essential oil yield by 30-40%.
It is essential that all chamomile growers have a sound weed control strategy, which may differ significantly between countries, law framework, means of production, industry to which the product is intended etc. Growers shall be extremely careful when applying herbicides, because the chamomile plants attract honeybees and other beneficial insects (ask a licensed agronomist).
The first measures against weeds are taken with the first tillage, well before planting the seedlings or direct seeding in the field. Many commercial chamomile growers believe that at least two hand weeding sessions are necessary, the first 6 weeks and the second 12 weeks after direct seeding. We must always be proactive and not let any weeds produce and disperse their seeds in the field.
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German Chamomile Weed Control
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