First herb of the year

Okay, I know I am not alone when I state that, “I am ready for some rebirth and all the glorious wonders that spring has to offer.” Winter has outdone itself this year. When I wake up to a small blizzard and it’s March 30th, it is time for a change. I am done with the bitter cold, high winds and layering my clothes for warmth. Stick a fork in me, I am done!

yarrow emergingAlthough there was still snow on the ground, I decided to take a walk to see if any of my herbal friends were peeking up through the mud and snow. I was overjoyed to see the distinctive featherlike leaves of Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) emerging. Thank goodness, it’s about time!

Not only does it validate spring has actually arrived but Yarrow is an herb that I rely on during most of the year. I welcome its return.

Yarrow is a very versatile herb. It is best known for its hemostatic (stops external and internal bleeding) and diaphoretic (reduces fevers) properties. But it is so much more. Yarrow is known as a normalizer; while it can stop bleeding, it can also promote blood circulation, which is very helpful with varicose and uterine congestion.  Yarrow is very bitter and aids in digestion. Its diuretic and antiseptic properties make it helpful with bladder infections too. It soothes and relieves pain making it great for aches, bruises and arthritis.  It pretty much assists and aids in all the major body systems.

Throughout folklore and history, uses for Yarrow have been mentioned over and over again. I believe the most famous mention is in Homer’s Iliad, where its legendary warrior Achilles uses Yarrow to treat the wounds of his fallen comrades. Recently, I came upon an interesting use for Yarrow. Apparently, in the Orkney Islands (north of Scotland) Yarrow was widely used for dispelling melancholy. It helps lift the burdens of troubled emotions, while cleansing them of sorrow or depression, which has lasted too long. Perhaps that is why I was so happy to see Yarrow on this fine day. It lifted my sorrows of a winter that’s gone on too long.

May spring and Yarrow emerge for you.

All information is shared for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any condition.