Bitter-tasting yarrow (Achillea millefolium) has been used as as folk remedy to treat colds and flu and to lower fevers by inducing sweating. Tea can be brewed from the leaves or flowers, but you'll probably want to add honey or another sweetener. Like many herbs, scientific studies have not proven yarrow's medicinal benefits, so always consult a physician before using it, and do not give it to children.
A garden that includes heirloom plants is a garden of memory as well as a place to preserve a slice of history. This white yarrow (Achillea), and the Iris and purple coneflower (Echinaceae) in the background, have been grown and shared for many centuries for their beauty and herbal uses, but they have survived because they are durable in a wide range of conditions and easy to propagate and share – all important characteristics for a plant to become an heirloom.
The planting scheme for this Colorado garden was inspired by the native plants of the area, lending a formal botanic garden feel to the landscape. Purple lavender and yellow yarrow complement each other amongst the verdant shrubbery, with an abundant range of textures adding additional visual interest.
Featured in this raised bed is an appealing cacophony of color including hot pink dianthus (a type of sweet William); lighter pink yarrow (Achillea Millefolium); hot pink salvia in the background; golden coleus 'Wizard' in the foreground and 'Sunshine' ligustrum, miniature to the left and right.
A hellstrip is an opportunity to establish a xeric, or waterwise, zone by using plants that won't need irrigation, says Evelyn J. Hadden, author of "Hellstrip Gardening" (April 2014, Timber Press). Tough plants can be beautiful too, as a border in Evanston, Wyo., uses varieties of yarrow (Achillea millefolium).