Achillea millefolium

Common Names: Yarrow
Category: Plants
Sub-category: Aster family

An erect, herbaceous, perennial plant that produces one to several stems 0.2 to 1 m in height, and has a spreading rhizomatous growth form. Leaves are evenly distributed along the stem, with the leaves near the middle and bottom of the stem being the largest. The leaves have varying degrees of hairiness (pubescence). The leaves are 5 to 20 cm long, bipinnate or tripinnate, almost feathery, and arranged spirally on the stems. The leaves are cauline, and more or less clasping. The inflorescence has 4 to 9 phyllaries and contains ray and disk flowers which are white to pink. The generally 3 to 8 ray flowers are ovate to round. Disk flowers range from 15 to 40. The inflorescence is produced in a flat-topped capitulum cluster.

Yarrow is a widely cultivated plant and thus can have a lot of variation in it's flower shape and color as well as other characteristics. Colors can include white, pink, red, orange, and yellow.

Found in mildly disturbed soil of grasslands and open forests. Because it is cultivated, also found in flower and herb gardens. Typically blooms May to July.

Primary Flower Color: White
Secondary Flower Color: Yellow
Edible Notes: Yarrow has also been used as a food or in teas, and was very popular as a vegetable in the 17th century. The younger leaves are said to be a pleasant leaf vegetable when cooked like spinach, or in a soup. Yarrow is sweet with a slight bitter taste. The leaves can also be dried and used as an herb in cooking. In the Middle Ages, yarrow was part of a herbal mixture known as gruit used in the flavoring of beer prior to the use of hops. The flowers and leaves are used in making some liquors and bitters.
Warnings: Not known to be dangerous.