Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) is an herbaceous perennial with feathery leaves and clusters of fragrant white flowers, widely distributed in North America, Asia and Europe. This herb has a long history of use for its healthful properties. The medicinal and culinary use of yarrow dates back to 60,000 years as fossilized yarrow pollen was discovered at Neanderthal burial caves in modern-day Iraq. The healing powers of yarrow has been documented and passed down in North America with various indigenous uses as well as ancient Chinese traditional herbalism.
Achillea, Yarrow's Latin name, originated from Greek mythology, specifically the story of legendary hero, Achilles. According to the legend, his mother dipped him into the river Styx by the ankle with the purpose of making him invincible. Fighting many battles in the Trojan War, Achilles then used yarrow to treat the wounds of his soldiers. In his last battle, he died from a wound to his heel, the only unprotected part of his body.
Yarrow shoots up its flowery stalks during the hot months of the summer. At Wild Coast Brew, we wild-forage yarrow flowers in various spots based on the general health of the ecosystem each year. Additionally, we grow and harvest in the farm's orchard to create a more pollinator-friendly and biodiverse habitat. Because yarrow is powerful and highly aromatic, we use very small amounts in our blends, The Heroine and the Protector.