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common yarrow


Achillea millefolium

Plant family

Aster (Asteraceae)

Plant group

Wildflowers and Herbs

Common yarrow is a perennial herbaceous plant with varieties native to both North America and Europe grouped under one species complex.
374 reports

Identification hints

Common yarrow is a perennial herb with many small, white flower heads arranged in flat-topped clusters at the tips of stems. The leaves are fern-like with many small divisions.

Did you know?

Indigenous people of North America used common yarrow for a variety of medicinal applications including to treat headaches, stings, cuts, sores, burns, and nosebleeds, stomach disorders, to break a fever, stop bleeding, and as an anesthetic. Common yarrow is also a valuable food source for a variety of insects.
Alaska , Alabama , Arkansas , Arizona , California , Colorado , Connecticut , Delaware , Florida , Georgia , Hawaii , Iowa , Idaho , Illinois , Indiana , Kansas , Kentucky , Louisiana , Massachusetts , Maryland , Maine , Michigan , Minnesota , Missouri , Mississippi , Montana , North Carolina , North Dakota , Nebraska , New Hampshire , New Jersey , New Mexico , Nevada , New York , Ohio , Oklahoma , Oregon , Pennsylvania , Rhode Island , South Carolina , South Dakota , Tennessee , Texas , Utah , Virginia , Vermont , Washington , Wisconsin , West Virginia , Wyoming
Common yarrow is distributed widely throughout temperate areas in the northern hemisphere. Found in dry, disturbed areas up to the alpine zone (including grasslands, sagebrush, meadows, and alpine tundra).
The leaves are arranged alternately along the stem, with varying degrees of hairiness. Blades are finely dissected but lance-shaped in outline, such that leaves appear feathery and fern-like.
Common yarrow has flower heads arranged in flat-topped clusters at the tip of the stems. Flower heads are small and white to yellowish-white but occasionally pink. Each flower head has 2 to 6 ray florets that appear as ‘petals’ with notches at the tips, surrounding cream-colored disk flowers. Approximately 10 to 20 flower heads make up one flower cluster.
The small flower heads of common yarrow dry down and contain tiny brown flattened achenes (hard fruits that may contain a seed) that are oblong in shape and 1-2 mm long.
Bloom Time
Common yarrow blooms from April to September depending on the location.

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