Achillea millefolium, Common Yarrow
Scientific Name: Achillea millefolium
Common Name: Common Yarrow
Also Called: Bloodwort, Carpenter's Weed, Hierba de Las Cortaduras, Milfoil, Plumajillo, Western Yarrow and Yarrow; (Spanish: Canfor)
Family: Asteraceae, Sunflower Family
Synonyms: (Achillea alpicola, A. lanulosa, A. angustissima, A. arenicola, A. aspleniifolia, A. borealis, more)
Duration: Perennial with rhizomes.
Size: Up to 3 feet
Growth Form: Forb/herb; erect typically single stems, branching near the top.
Leaves:Green; linear, delicate pinnately cut, feathery or fern-like, 4 inches or more long, basal leaves petiolate, upper leaves smaller, sessile.
Flower Color: White to pinkish; radiate heads, ray flowers with 20 or more florets, disk flowers also white or pink, inflorescence is 1 to many heads in a rounded flat-topped cluster, a corymbose panicle; fruit an achene.
Flowering Season: June to September.
Elevation: 5,500 to 11,500 feet.
Habitat Preferences: Multiple habitats, upper deserts, high chaparral, pine forests in arid or moist habitats.
Recorded Range: Common Yarrow is found throughout the United States and Canada. It is also native to Baja California and Mexico. In Arizona it is found in the north, east and southern parts of the state. Introduced in AK, HI and elsewhere.
U.S. Weed Information: Achillea millefolium is listed in: Weeds of Kentucky and adjacent states: a field guide, Weeds of the Northeast, Weeds of Nebraska and the Great Plains, and Weeds of the United States. Plants included here may become weedy or invasive.
Invasive/Noxious Weed Information: No data available.
Wetland Indicator: Achillea millefolium is included on the USDA 2012 National Wetland Plant List.
Threatened/Endangered Information: The State of Maine has listed Northern Yarrow, Achillea millefolium var. borealis as a Species of Special Concern.
Achillea millefolium var. alpicola, Common Yarrow (AZ) and
Achillea millefolium var. occidentalis, Western Yarrow (AZ).
Comments: Common Yarrow is a strong scented plant, widespread throughout the United States and Arizona’s high country. Not a desert species but common where found. It has such variable characteristics that it has been classified both as a single species with varieties and as individual species, almost 60.
This interesting plant is a weed to some, a worthwhile garden cultivar to others and one variety, Achillea "borealis", is protected by the state of Maine as a Species of Special Concern. The characteristic finely dissected leaves are easily identified in the seedling stage.
Ethnobotanical Uses: An infusion of the plant was used to treat children with colds while other ethno-botanical uses include uses for respiratory disorders. See the full species account from Native American Ethnobotany, University of Michigan, Dearborn.