One of our favourite multi-functional plants, and a great ground cover for sunnier spots in a food forest/forest garden. A perennial herb with many medicinal uses, yarrow is is one of the best diaphoretic herbs and also contains cineol, an antiseptic. It helps to dilate skin pores and produce sweating so is used in the treatment of fevers specifically as well as colds and sore throats generally. Yarrow also has a long history of use as a healing herb - it contains a clotting compound so can be used as a poultice to stem the flow of blood from wounds. A wash from the flowers can be used to treat eczema or the flowers can be infused to make a toning facial steam. The leaves are nutritious and small amounts of young leaves can be added to salads.
Yarrow is also a good food source for bees, hoverflies, butterflies and birds. It also improves the soil and the health of plants growing nearby, and can limit erosion by binding the soil, although this property can make it invasive too. Cut yarrow can be soaked in a bucket and used to make a fertilizer or added to a compost heap to aid decomposition. It is a dynamic mineral accumulator and contains nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium and copper.
Yellow and green dyes can be obtained from the flowers. Height to 60cm when in flower. 9cm pot.