Common Yarrow

Common name: Common Yarrow

Scientific name: Achillea millefolium

Family: Compositae

Uses: Cosmetic, decorative, medicinal.Cosmetic uses include an astringent and for cleansing and an addition to skin lotions. Decorative use include making a yellow to olive dye and attractive flowers. Flowers dry nicely and can be used in wreaths or arrangements, or use them in fresh florals too. Yarrow is said to have some medicinal properties. Some people are allergic to yarrow.

History: Also known as Milfoil, Soldier

Description: This erect herb has fern-like foliage, which is covered with woolly hairs. Leaves are alternate and pinnately divided into many small segments. Leaflets are sharply cleft. Numerous flower heads are composed of disk & ray florets in flat-topped clusters. The fruit is an achene.

Plant type: Perennial

Hardiness: Hardiness zone 2.

Height: 6-10 inches

Width: 10-16 inches

Light: Full sun to light shade

Soil: fairly rich, well-drained soil with a pH of 6.0-6.7


Disease: Powdery mildew, stem rot, rust.

Cultivation: Yarrow grows easily from seed, or divide clumps in the spring or fall. If it is used as a ground cover, it may be mowed once per year. Remove dead flowers.

Companion planting: When planted with other herbs, it will deepen their fragrance and flavor by increasing their essential oils. Yarrow attracts beneficial insects, such as lady bugs who like to lay their eggs on the flowers. It may also help nearby plants to resist disease. Yarrow repels ants, flies, and Japanese beetles.

Propagation: Divide(every other year) in spring or fall. Rarely propagated by cuttings.

Flowering period: June to September

Flower color: white, red, pink, orange, yellow

Harvesting: Gather leaves and flowers in late summer. Dried flowers hold their color well.

Garden notes: