Identify Pineapple Weed

PINEAPPLE WEED (Matricaria discoidea)

Pineapple Weed

How to Identify Pineapple Weed(Edible)

Common names
Pineapple Weed, Wild Chamomile, Disc Mayweed

Botanical name
Matricaria discoidea

Meaning of botanical name
Matricaria is derived from the Latin “matrix”, meaning “of the womb”, probably due to the genus’ association with uterine treatments. Discoidea means “without rays” in reference to Pineapple Weed’s lack of petals

Known hazards
There is some circumstantial evidence that some people may display allergies to Pineapple Weed, so only a small amount is advised first

Could be confused with
German Chamomile or Mayweed, neither of which is poisonous. Mayweed is scentless and German Chamomile doesn’t smell of pineapple

Range and distribution
Throughout UK, Europe, Asia, and America. It is thought pineapple weed was brought to the UK from America, though it is a native of Asia, as a garden plant

Likes to grow on very stony, scrubby soil. It is often found in rubble piles and driveways, and places where there is a lot of footfall – gateways, footpaths, etc

Physical characteristics
The leaves are very fine and feathery, and the flowers have no petals, just a yellow centre. When crushed, the petals and leaves emit a pineapple scent

Folklore, tall tales, and not so folklore
Pineapple Weed has been used to repel insects, by rubbing the juice on the skin, or hanging in a room

Edible use
The flowers can be eaten raw or in salads, or to make jellies, syrups and cordials. Leaves and flowers can be used to make a fragrant tea

Pineapple Weed has been used for many uterine conditions, as a sedative, antispasmodic, and anthelmintic (wormer). Please consult your doctor if you have a medical condition

The essential oil myrcene is found in Pineapple Weed. This is an important aromatic in the perfume industry.

Pineapple weed - Matricaria discoidea