Has anyone used yarrow as a fertiliser, and which is the best part of the plant to use--just the leaves and stalk or the whole plant, including the roots?
In addition to its use as an herbal tea remedy for fighting off colds and flu, or its appearance in fresh or dry flower arrangements, yarrow can indeed be used as both a fertilizer and compost activator. Adding yarrow leaves to your compost pile will speed up the decomposition process, even in small amounts (It's believed that just one finely chopped yarrow leaf can produce the same results as a wheelbarrow full of compost). As fertilizer, the essential oils from its chopped leaves can boost the quality of your garden soil.
Hi Nikki and thanks for the data but I still do not know anyhing about which part is the best to use. Maybe I should just do as I do with my Confrey; chop the leaves and stalks coarsely, put in a sack, soak for a month and dilute to the usual weak tea colour for liquid manures.
Just the finely chopped or crushed leaves should be sufficient.
HI Nikki and thanks for the reply, my task for today is to harvest a bag of Yarrow from a patch on the edge of the bush near home. I note that the roots of Yarrow are similar to those of Coriander and from my cooking book notes, the roots of coriander are are very potent and i wonder if the same aplies to Yarrow. Do you have any information on the identity of the chemical/s in Yarrow which make it so potent?
Thanks Nikki for your response but I wonder, if Yarrow is so potent, why has not some agricultural chemist identified the chemicals, synthesised them and made a fortune?
Actually, there are some products on the market, such as Q.R. Compost Activator (made in England by Chase Organics), that contain yarrow. This plant also has a long history of use in herbal medicine.
Ni Nikki, thanks again for the info and "introducing" me to Chase Organics, their web site is great. I collected a sack of yarrow yesterday, chopped and added to my current half built compost heap, Today's task is to cover it with some old compost and water the pile with undiluted kelp seaweed and comfrey brew. I completed an Organic Horticulture certificate two years ago as I had to change my gardens to No Dig as a heart attack has robed me of the ability to dig and I needed to expand my organic know how. The WWW has been great but it is the practical advice from organic gardeners like yourself which is the greatest source of help. Task 2 for today is to collect more seaweed to dry out before chopping in my mulcher and soaking some in a sack in liquid manure bin #2 and mulching my tomatoes with the rest as I find the slow release of seaweed constituents keeps most of the bugs away. Thanks again for the help,
I have beautiful yarrow, but of course, it is very invasive and I would like to keep it in one area.
The easiest way to to make sure that you cut the seed heads off after they fade. Most cultivated varieties of yarrow do not become invasive, but common yarrow (the white kind) can become invasive and you need to be diligent about removing seed heads to keep it in check.
There is a yarrow weed in with my flower garden. Should I pull it out?
That is up to you. A weed is really only a plant you don't want in your flower bed. If you like the plant, leave it. If you don't like it, pull it out.
We have a lot of ants in our garden, and they seem partial to make their nests under the yarrow plants. Is this common? These plants are not doing well. Thanks
It is likely the plants are being affected by aphids. They are very small insects that suck the sap out of the plant. The ants use aphids like cows, and will "milk" them for the sweet honeydew they excrete. The ants will set up a colony near the aphid population to make the trip to care for them shorter.
This article will help with the aphids:
Once the aphids are gone, this article will help with the ants:
Is there a way to keep yarrow blooms pink instead of turning white?
Yarrow, along with other flowers, fade as they age.