Achillea millefolium



Bloodwort, Gandana (Sanskrit), I-chi-kao (Chinese), Lady’s Mantle, Milfoil, Miilifolium, Old Man’s Pepper, Sanuinary, Soldier’s Woundwort, Stanch Grass, Thousand Leaf, Thousand Seal, Nosebleed, Achillea, Bad Man’s Plaything, Carpenter’s Weed, Death Flower, Devil’s Nettle, Eerie, Field Hops, Gearwe, Hundred Leaves Grass, Knight’s Milfoil, Knyghtenm Old Man’s Mustard, Seven Year’s Love, Snake’s Grass, Tansy, Yerw


A hardy weedy perennial, grows 8-18 inches, sometimes to 24 inches tall. If cultivated and fertilized, can grow to 5 feet. It is identifiable in the part by the finely divided leaves (millefolium= of a thousand leave) and the erect flowering stalk with the white or reddish composite flowers that are arranged in panicled false umbels, and in part by its aromatic scent, which is released when the leaves and flowers are crushed. Borne in large, flat, dense clusters 6 inches in diameter, the flowers are on top of the erect stems. Each flower head resembles a single flower but has five ray florets and a central disk. Flowers in summer to early fall. Seeds have small wings. It has soft, grayish, feathery, ethereal-looking leaves. The flowers are usually white but hybrids of today come in lavenders, reds, lemon-yellow and pinks. Varieties: A tomentosa, A. filipendulina, A decolorans. The white blooming A. millefolium is the most cultivated for medicinal use. Raising it from seed is possible, but quite involved. Collect a few plants from the roadside, etc., and set them 6-8 inches (15-20 cm) apart in normal garden soil in a sunny location. Everything else will take care of itself, as long as the area has no standing water. Zones 3-10. Not heat tolerant.

Descrip.- It has many leaves cut into a multitude of fine small parts, of a deep green color and tough substance; the stalk is upright, of a dull grayish green, and the flowers are usually white, but not all of the whiteness and grow in knots. Some of these, among others, will grow of a delicate crimson, which are those that produce seed, and from this seed will rise red flowered plants.

Where Found

Native to Europe, now commonly found growing wild in North America (except far north). This herb is a familiar plant in meadows and fields, along the sides of country lanes, roadsides, on embankments, and in landfills and garbage dumps.

 This is an upright, and not unhandsome plant common in our pasture grounds, and, like many others, of much more than is generally known. It is perennial and grows to two feet high.


It blooms from July to the latter end of August.

Gender: Feminine, Planet: Venus, Element: Water, Powers: Courage, Love, Psychic Powers, Exorcism

Government and Virtues

It is under the influence of Venus. As a medicine it is drying and binding. A decoction of it boiled with white wine, is good to stop the running of the reins in men, and whites in women; restrains violent bleedings, and is excellent for the pilea. A strong tea in this case should be made of the leaves, and drunk plentifully; and equal parts of it, and of a toad flax, should be made into a poultice with pomatum, and applied outwardly. This induces sleep, eases the pain, and lessens the bleeding. An ointment of the leaves cures wounds, and is good for inflammations, ulcers, fistulas, and all such runnings as abound with moisture.


Parts Usually Used
Whole plant in flower, dried in the shade. (usually leaves and flowers)

Medicinal Properties
Astringent, antispasmodic, tonic, promotes sweating, styptic, hemostatic, alterative, diuretic, vulnerary, diaphoretic, carminitive, and stomachic

Biochemical Information
Yarrow yields a volatile oil containing azulene, also gum, tannin, resin, chlorides of calcium and potassium, and various salts such as nitrates, malates, and phosphorus, cineol and proaculene, achilleine (which is the bitter component of the herb), and vitamin C. Over a 100 biologically active compounds have been identified.

Used since antiquity for headaches, fevers (drink hot tea), colds, and influenza. Helps curb diarrhea, dysentery, anemia, gas, diabetes, Bright’s disease, palpitations and excessive menstruation. Treatment for gastrointestinal and gallbladder complaints, gonorrhea, toothache (chew the leaves), lack of appetite, and catarrhs of the digestive system, hyperacidity, nervousness, nosebleed, bleeding from the lungs, anorexia, enteritis, stomach ulcers, hemoptysis, gastritis, high blood pressure, styptic, and sleep disturbances, produces a feeling of peace and relaxation for women in the menopause, and is a tonic. The herb, either as a tea or as a bath additive, has proved helpful in allaying rheumatic pain and control of high blood pressure. Used for smallpox, typhoid fever, measles, malaria (it is more effective than quinine), and chickenpox to relieve itching.
In antiquity, and during the Middle Ages, yarrow was used primarily to treat old wounds. As a wash, it can be used to stop bleeding from piles, nosebleeds, and cuts , and to soothe sores and bruises.
Used as an insect repellent for Japanese beetles, ants and flies. Plant as a border to the garden.

Formulas or Dosages
For medicinal purposes, all the flowering parts above ground are used, everything except the lower, lignified parts of the plant. Cut it up to dry in the open air, then cut it into small pieces and store it in containers that can be tightly closed, protected from light and dampness.
One or two cups of tea made from the leaves or blossoms is reputed to stop nausea within minutes.
Tea: steep 1 heaping tsp. in 1 cup boiling water for 30 minutes. Drink 3 or 4 cups per day an hour before meals and upon retiring. It must be warm to be effective.
Take one wineglass full night and morning of a standard infusion from the leaves and occasional flowers.


Yarrow interferes with the absorption of iron and other minerals.
Small numbers of cases of allergic reactions have been reported upon contact with the plant; their skin turned red and an itchy rash developed. Such people also cannot tolerate yarrow tea or yarrow baths. Discontinue the treatment at once if problems of this kind appear. Then the allergic reaction will disappear quickly. Avoid large doses in pregnancy because the herb is a uterine stimulant.
Large or frequent doses taken over a long period may be potentially harmful. Contains thujone, considered toxic. Consult with the doctor.

Magickal Uses

When worn, yarrow protects the wearer, and when held in the hand, it stops all fear and grant courage. A bunch of dried herb hung over the bed or yarrow used in wedding decorations ensures a love lasting at least seven years. It is also used in love spells. Carrying the herb not only brings love but it also attracts friends and distant relations you wish to contact. It draws the attention of those you most want to see. The flowers are made into an infusion and the resulting tea is drunk to improve psychic powers. Washing the head with a yarrow infusion will prevent baldness but won’t cure it if it has already begun. It is also used to exorcise evil and negativity from a person, place or thing.


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