Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)
Legend has it that Achilles would treat his army of soldiers with this herb when they went into battle; a shame he didn’t use any on that famous Achilles heel of his!
This herb is used in the treatment of all kinds of healing both internal and external. It can help in the treatment of piles, and yet it can also be used to regulate menstruation by bringing on absent periods. In the I Ching Book of Changes, Yarrow stalks were used for divination before using coins became more popular.
Other names: Milfoil, nosebleed, thousand leaf, Carpenter’s weed.
Description and the places it grows in
Found in USA and Europe, with the American variety being the stronger of the two. The plant is perennial and harvested when in flower.
Anti-inflammatory, diaphoretic, antipyretic, hypotensive, diuretic.
Blood Pressure: It encourages blood flow to the surface of the skin due to the flavonoids that dilate the peripheral arteries. The cyanidin content affects the vagus nerve, thus slowing down the heartbeat.
Wounds: Native Americans used this herb externally in the treatment of burns in the forms of poultices, it is generally the herb’s tannin content that is effective.
Colds and fevers: Promotes sweating if taken as an infusion and works very well if combined with Peppermint and Elderflower.
Other uses: Chewing a fresh leaf alleviates toothache.
Volatile oil, azulene, glycoalkaloid, achilleine.
In large doses it can cause vertigo, headaches, and an increased sensitivity to sunlight.