Yarrow ~ Botanical Name: Achillea ~ The Compositae Family If you listen…..
If you listen, Not to the pages or preachers
But to the smallest flower Growing from a crack In’ your heart,
You will hear a great song Moving across a wide ocean
Whose water is the music Connecting all the islands
Of the universe together, And touching all
You will feel it Touching you
Around you…Embracing you With light.”-John Squadra – American Artist and Poet –
The botanical name achillea was chosen to honor Achilles, legendary warrior and hero of the Trojan War. The origin of the common name yarrow appears to have come from gearwe or gierwan of Anglo-Saxon origin. Loosely translated, it means “to be ready” or “to prepare,” suggesting it’s use against various ills (including lovesickness).
According to an English Superstition, if a girl plucked the leaves from a graveyard, she should put them under her pillow and upon wakening, recite the following verse:
Good morning, good morning, good Yarrow
And thrice good morning to thee
Tell me, before this time tomorrow
Who my true love is to be Her dreams the following night were to then reveal her future husband. In years past, illness was thought to come from the stars, the minds the humors. Plants that yielded beauty and medicinal qualities were thought to have mystical powers. In France and Ireland, yarrow was one of the herbs of St. John that were picked while they were still moist from the morning dew and then burned on the eve of St. John’s Day to protect against evil. Yarrow has many uses.
In addition to those mentioned in the section on Floral Recipes, Yarrow has been used for brewing beer and as an astringent solution.