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A Note on this Materia Medica

Each botanical write up is compiled from my notes taken at various herbal schools, favorite herb books and personal experience. This information is for general health and information only. Nothing contained in the herbal monographs should be taken as medical advice. People passionate about living a holistic lifestyle and the uses of plant medicine will find something of interest here. This project is dedicated to my love of herbs and a place where I can share with others who feel the same. This is a work in progress and as I go through my notes and continue my studies I will be updating and adding new herbs. Thank you for being here!

-Colleen, Head Witch

YARROW

Achillea millefolium 

Common Names: Yarrow, Milfoil, Woundwort, Devils' Nettle
Family: Asteraceae
Part/s Used:  Leaves and flowers  
Energetics: Cooling, drying 
Taste: Bitter, pungent, salty, mild sweetness 
Actions: Diaphoretic, emmenagogue, astringent, diuretic, antiseptic, hemostatic, anti-inflammatory
Constituents: Essential oils, flavonoids, tannins, salicylic acid
Planet: Venus
Element: Water

Medicinal Preparations:

Tincture (ratio & % alcohol): Fresh: 1:2 -1:3 60%   Dry:1:5 60% or 1:6 60%
Drops: 10-60  Times a day: 4x

Glycerite: Fresh: 1:3   Glycerin: 50%   Water: 50%

Habitat and Botanical Description: 

Yarrow is a highly aromatic perennial that flourishes in a sunny, warm habitat. Often found along roadsides, meadows, mountains, deserts and coastal dunes from May to August. A beautiful show of tiny white to pink flowers in dense, flat topped clusters. The leaves are fern like and the stalks grow up to 3’ tall.

Medicinal Uses:

Internally, the leaves and flowers (fresh preferred but dried is great too!) are used in tea or tincture to lessen the symptoms of colds and flu especially when accompanied with fever and pain. Its cooling volatile oils dilate the blood vessels and stimulate sweating to encourage heat loss. Great for when that fever is trapped within the body and needs to be released. It is cooling and sedative to excess heat.

Yarrow is a diuretic and a urinary antiseptic cooling the tissues in the bladder and urethra. It is one of the best herbs for UTI and cystitis. ⁠

Yarrow is also an effective blood mover and stimulant suitable for damp/stagnation tissue states. A cup of hot tea stimulates delayed menses and beneficial when experiencing a clotting, cramping menses and helps to promote a more regular flow.⁠

Yarrow is an effective hemostatic and contains anti-inflammatory and astringent properties. It is beneficial to all manners of wounds, lacerations, bruises, bites and stings. Contains mild disinfectant properties and is useful in  salves.⁠ A bath made with a strong tea (ounce of herb steeped in 2 quarts water) for tendon and joint inflammation.

Harvesting:

During the summer months gather the recently flowered stalks and bundle together with twine a couple inches from the cut ends and hang out of direct sunlight with adequate ventilation.

Beauty: 

The flowers can be simmered in water and used as a facial steam to promote a healthy complexion.

Contraindications:

Avoid taking internally during pregnancy, check for allergic dermatitis of the Asteraceae family. Low to moderate doses.

Recommended Products:

 

Sources:

  • Cunningham, Scott. Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs. St. Paul, MN: Llewellyn Publications; 1985
  • Grieve, M. (1971). A Modern Herbal. New York, NY: Dover Publications. (Original work published 1931)
  • Hoffman, David. The Complete Herbs Sourcebook. New York, NY: Skyhorse Publishing Inc; 2016
  • Moore, Michael. Medicinal Plants of the Pacific Northwest. Santa Fe, NM: Museum of New Mexico Press; 1993
  • Popham, Sajah. The Vitalist Herbal Practitioner Program. School of Evolutionary Herbalism. Lecture Notes; 2021
  • Sinadinos, Christa. The Essential Guide to Western Botanical Medicine.Feildbrook, CA; 2020
  • Sinadinos, Christa. Northwest School for Botanical Studies Course.Lecture Notes; 2014

Disclosure: This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Consult with a qualified healthcare practitioner before using herbal products, particularly if you are pregnant, nursing, or on any medications.