Common Yarrow
Achillea millefolium L.
Family: Asteraceae, Aster
Genus: Achillea
Other names: milfoil, woundwort
Nomenclature: millefolium = with a thousand leaves
Nativity / Invasiveness: Montana native plant
Medicinal plant
No edibility data

General: aromatic plant, 10-80 cm tall. Growth habit: erect perennial from spreading rhizomes. Stems: simple or somewhat forked above, cobwebby-hairy to smooth.

Leaves: alternate, fern-like, 3-10 cm long, 2-3 times pinnately divided into fine segments 1-2 mm wide. Lower leaves are stalked.

Flowerheads: white, sometimes pinkish, with 3-5 rays, 3-6 mm long and 10-30 inner yellowish disk florets. Numerous heads in flat-topped clusters, 2-10 cm wide. Involucres 3-6 mm long with elliptic, dark-edged bracts in several rows. May-September.

Fruits: hairless, flattened achenes without pappus.


Common on plains, hills, slopes and disturbed ground in all of MT. Also in AK and the rest of the U.S. except the desert areas of the s.w.
Medicinal Uses

This aromatic herb has been used for 1000's of years as a medicine and insecticide plant. Yarrow tea and leaves have been applied externally to treat burns, boils, open sores, pimples, earaches, sore eyes and mosquito bites. The tea has also been taken internally to treat colds, diarrhea, fevers and even diabetes. Historically, yarrow was best known as a plant that stops bleeding. The alkaloid achilleine reduces clotting time of blood and has been used in modern-day medicine to suppress menstruation.

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