Plant Profile: Yarrow

Yarrow
(Achillea millefolium)




Other Common Names: Thousand-leaf, Soldier's woundwort

Family: COMPOSITAE

Parts Used: Aerial parts (Whole plant above the ground)

Energetics: Warming yet cooling. Drying. 

Body Systems Affected: Cardiovascular, heart, Lungs, liver, spleen

Preparations: Infusion, Tincture

Key Components: Essential oil, camphor, chamazulene, cineol, Linalool, proazulene, achilleine, pinene, thujone, betacarotene, vitamin C, Vitamin E, flavonoids, tannins, bitter alkaloids, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, 

Actions:

Foundational: Astringent (the leaf more than the flower). Aromatic (The flower more than the leaf)
Primary: Alterative. Carminative. Diaphoretic. Diuretic. Hypotensive. 
Secondary: Anti-inflammatory. Antiseptic. 

Uses:


  • Stimulates digestion
  • Fevers (as a diaphoretic) (take internally or use in bath)
  • Tones blood vessels
  • Lowers blood pressure by dilating peripheral vessels
  • Urinary antiseptic indicated for infections such as cystitis
  • Used externally as a styptic and antiseptic for wounds. Crushed or powdered can be used internally or externally for any acute bleeding such as cuts and abrasions.
  • Thrombotic conditions associated with hypotension
  • Aids in the common cold/flu
  • Yarrow is amphoteric and seems to know what the body needs. It is both stimulating and sedative and is not only used to stimulate the menstrual cycle and ease cramps and uterine tension it is also effective to reduce heavy menstrual bleeding. Useful for painful menstruation & bleeding (amenorrhea, menorrhagia and vaginal leucorrhea caused by poor pelvic circulation and weakness <----- Yarrows astringent properties!)
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Childbirth
  • Can lead to a reduction in bad bacteria in the digestive system and improve intestinal health.
  • Studies tested yarrow against 5 different types of bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus, E. coil, Klebsiella penumoniae, Pseudomonas aerginosa and salmonella enteritidis) and 2 fungi (Aspergillus niger and Candida albicans) it's antimicrobial activity was found to be effective against them ALL. 
  • One study showed that yarrow has the ability to reduce serum lipid levels

Combines well with:



  • For fevers: combines well with Elder flower, Peppermint, Boneset, Cayenne and Ginger
  • For cold/Flu (See fever above) combines well with equal parts elder flower, lemon balm and peppermint
  • For high blood pressure : Combines well with Hawthorn, Lime blossom and Mistletoe
  • For Hemorrhoids: Combines well with witch hazel, Bayberry and Oak bark. 
  • For menstrual or stomach cramps: Combine with Ginger


Contraindications:Because of its stimulating actions on uterine muscles it is not recommended in pregnancy. However it is very useful during childbirth to encourage labor and minimize excessive bleeding.

Personal Experience:

Growing: A perennial plant that grows easily in the wild and will easily self-sow once it is established. Grows best in full sun in soil with a Ph level between 4 & 7.

Harvesting: The whole plant above the ground should be harvested when the flowers are in bloom between June and September

History:

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