Today's herb is Yarrow (Achillea millefolium). Yarrow has beautiful flowers and feathery leaves. It is cold hardy, low-maintence, perennial, and blooms for long periods of time. It spreads via root growth as well as re-seeding, so it has been occasionally known to take over large areas and become somewhat invasive. Despite this, yarrow is a plant native to Portland, and we have some planted in our garden.
All of the above ground parts (leaves, flowers and stem) are used for medicinal purposes. Harvetsing should be done while the flowers are in bloom. Yarrow is most famous for its ability to help stop bleeding. It has blood-clotting as well as anti-microbial properties and can be applied directly to a cut or burn, or used in a salve.
When taken internally, as a tea, it has been known to help with colds and fevers, urinary tract infections, digestion, hypertension, and as a liver tonic. It can also be added to a bath to help with hemorrhoids (I am totally going to try this!).
I added some to this year's salve oil. Have you ever used yarrow medicinally?