Summer is in full swing! Everyone is enjoying the sunshine, is out camping, hiking, fishing, and all the other amazing activities we have in our beautiful state. This time of year there is a plant that grows all over Alaska. It packs a powerful punch and is an amazing tool to have in your herbal repertoire. That plant is called yarrow.

Yarrow is known by the Latin name of Achillea millefolium. Another common name for this plant is Queen Anne’s Lace. Let me tell you about many of the ways this plant can be a benefit to you this summer.

One of the more popular healing properties yarrow is known for is its styptic ability.  Styptic means that yarrow helps to stop bleeding. This herb is also anti-septic, anti-inflammatory, and a sedative.  It is perfect for cuts, scrapes, bruises, and sores.  This herb can be used externally by chopping up, grinding down, or even chewing up and then placing it on the affected area. If needed this herb can be eaten (although quite bitter) to help bleeding issues internally as well as digestive discomforts.

With it being summer in Alaska, can you say MOSQUITOS? Yarrow is also a great insect repellent. Take the plant, break it down through grinding, chopping, or again, even chewing, and then rub the natural oils and juice inside the plant over your skin.  If you rely on this as your sole repellent, reapply often. If those sneaky buggers do manage to bite you, you can use yarrow for the irritation, especially if you have an inflammatory reaction to bug bites.

Yarrow also makes a beautiful tea and is excellent for colds, flu, virus, and fevers.  Use 1-2 tsp. of fresh or dried yarrow and steep in freshly boiled water for 10-15 minutes. It helps the body to perspire and regulates body temperature.  Yarrow is my “go to” if one of my children has a fever. If you are making this tea for a child, use 1/2 tsp. of yarrow per 8-12 oz. of water. Weaker teas are more effective for little bodies. Yarrow tea is also a very effective remedy for burns. Make the tea as normal, put in the fridge or freezer to cool, then you can use organic cotton balls to apply to burned skin. If it is a large area, you can dip strips of clean cotton cloth in the tea and wrap the affected area.

Both the leaves and the flowers can be used when harvesting this plant. The best time to harvest is late spring and early summer when the plant is still young and tender. However, it can be harvested anytime and used very effectively. Make sure you harvest in areas that have not been sprayed with chemicals or near roadways.  Also, when wild harvesting, make sure you use healthy and sustainable harvesting methods. Do not harvest all of the plant in one area. It is also helpful to make notes when you come across a good harvesting area with a plentiful supply of great quality herbs for future reference.

Now get out there and harvest yourself some yarrow! 

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Owner and Founder of Forget Me Not Alternative Healing Aleesha is a Board Certified FootZonologist® as well as a Board Certified FootZonology® Instructor through the Nordblom American Institute of FootZonology®. She graduated in 2010 with her Footzonology® Certification and graduated in 2012 with her Footzonology® Instructor’s Certification. Aleesha has also taken CE courses through the National Certified Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork learning specifically how to help heal deep emotional scars and mental/emotional trauma. She is also currently going through The Trinity School of Natural Health to complete her schooling as a Naturopath. Aleesha has significant experience working with allergies and young children. Her area of expertise is with controlling health challenges (small and great) through proper diet and elimination of toxins, stress, and emotional/mental blockages and triggers.Aleesha is a gifted healer. Her first priority in life has always been as a mother, but having her three beautiful children has made her realize that her other mission in life is to be a healer. Everything Aleesha has learned about health and all of the healing gifts that she has discovered within herself she attributes to the incredible children that God blessed her with. Aleesha has been able to heal and cure herself of many of the health challenges that plagued her life for many years.

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