Thursday, December 24, 2009
yarrow also know as Milfoil, Old Man's Pepper, Soldier's Woundwort, Knight's Milfoil, Thousand Weed, Nose Bleed, Carpenter's Weed, Bloodwort, Staunchweed
Yarrow is one of the most useful herbs to have in a home garden or yard. It does have a tendency to spread like wild fire and can become a nuisance so remember this if you plant it somewhere. It is however quite a pretty plant to have around and it is not picky about where or how it grows. I routinely dig up clumps and fling them on banks and bare spots and a new patch grows.Yarrow will also grow in most any climate and any soil condition so it makes a good plant for those with brown thumbs.
Yarrow grows from 10 to 20 inches high, a single stem, fibrous and rough, the leaves alternate, 3 to 4 inches long and 1 inch broad, larger and rosette at the base, clasping the stem, the segments very finely cut, fern-like, dark-green, giving the leaves a feathery appearance. The flowers are several bunches of flat-topped panicles consisting of numerous small, white flower heads. Each tiny flower resembles a daisy. The whole plant is more or less hairy, with white, silky hairs.The white yarrow is considered to be the best for medicinal purposes.
In china yarrow is used as a divination tool however there are many more conventional uses which make yarrow one of my top choices to have on the homestead . antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent, carminative, diaphoretic, digestive, emmenagogue, stimulant, and tonics, vasodilator and vulnerary. Yarrow is used against colds, cramps, fevers, kidney disorders, toothaches, skin irritations, and hemorrhages, and to regulate menses, stimulate the flow of bile, and purify the blood. Medicinal tea is a good remedy for severe colds and flu, for stomach ulcers, amenorrhea, abdominal cramps, abscesses, trauma and bleeding, and to reduce inflammation.
Do not use yarrow during pregnancy, for undiagnosed bleeding, or for more than two weeks.
Use flowers, leaves and stems.
A piece of the plant held against a wound will staunch bleeding.
An infusion can help to break a fever.
A tea made from yarrow with peppermint and elderflower can be used to fight colds and flu.
Yarrow can be of benefit in mild cystitis.
Improves circulation by acting as a vasodilator.
Lowers blood pressure.
Dry herb edible as a spice or flavoring, strong sage flavor.
Can be used in dry floral arrangements and as a scent in potpourri
An aromatic tea: To 1 tsp. dried herb add 1 cup boiling water, steep for 10 min. sweeten to taste.