The following is an excerpt taken from the book “Earth Magic” by Claire Nahmad
Yarrow is call the herb of the Virgin because it is woman’s herb and a witch’s herb, rich in its efficacious power in magic and incantations. Look for yarrow in the wild and carry its seeds. You will find it flowering in the early summer, in the meadows and the pastures , and on farmers’ land lying fallow. Its leaves are of a dark gray-greenish hue, like curling feathers of lace, and if you crush them gently, their aroma will rise and suggest to your senses the twilight magic of nature under a full moon and the deep olive green of the forces of life as they move in majesty through the earth. These things the witches knew of old, and any wort-cunning or spellmaking that allied itself with the powers of darkness they knew they could ward off with this mystic her of the Virgin.
The flowers of the yarrow, which continue into September and even beyond (if the autumn brings a Saint’s Summer or Indian Summer), are little things, white but washed with a tinge of pink or delicate lilac. They grow in umbels, clustered like tiddy daisies. They have a sharp scent that foxes are said to like.
The yarrow needs a hot sunny spot, and it likes a well drained, dry soil. You may gather its leaves and its flowers all summer long but if you wish to dry the herb, take what you need of it in the early summer. If you hear that a wedding is to take place give a sprig of the Virgin’s herb to the bride, for it is lucky for both. It will bring her seven years of married happiness and if you bless the herb with a witch’s charm, her blissful years will number seven times seven.
Make a tisane, and minister it for chills, colds, fever, twinges in the ear, eczema, diarrhea, and headaches. An ointment from its leaves and flowers (you must use both in the tisane also) will heal wounds. Take the yarrow tea as a tonic for debility or convalescence. It will soothe measles, chicken pox, small pox, Bright’s desease, and diabetes. It will cleanse and soothe the stomach and take away indigestion and palpitations.
Women particularly should drink an infusion of the yarrow from time to time to keep them free from feminine troubles. It will steady or encourage the menstrual flow as needed…..
Yarrow is a Venus herb. Like the Virgin, it is full of grace and a cure for all ills. Use it to bring great blessing and potency to your magic and spells. Yarrow is the emblem of mother love, and in the Language of lovers it says, “Be comforted, for love is the salve of all sorrows.”
I normally do not like to cut and paste others words yet I have recently discovered the works of Claire Nahmad and have found her wisdom to be boundless. A woman from the old country and taught in the old ways handed down through generations.