Achillea millefolium, commonly known yarrow, is a beautiful native plant of Eurasia and was introduced to North America in the 1700s. Its lacy leaves give it a distinct look. The leaves also cluster in an umbrella like shape. Once established, their drought tolerant qualities make them an excellent choice for the water wise garden. These plants tend to grow so well in our climate that they can be considered somewhat invasive outside of cultivation.


Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) blooms up close 


Landscape Planting – Achillea millefolium Basics 


Botanical Name: Achillea millefolium

Common Name: Yarrow

Type: perennial shrub

Native Range: Eurasia, but naturalized in North America

Size: 2 to 3 feet tall, 2 to 3 feet wide

Bloom Time: Spring, summer, and fall

Bloom Color: White, yellow, pink, red, purple, orange

Sun: Full sun

Water & Soil: Once the plant is established, minimal supplemental irrigation. They require well-draining soil, however the soil can be poor quality

Maintenance: Yarrow needs somewhat continual maintenance, especially periodic pruning off of dead flowers

Suggested Use: Group planting, pollinator garden (butterflies and bees)



The umbrella like structure of yarrow blooms


For landscape planting, yarrow grows needs full sun. Our landscape designers at Creative Concepts Landscape will be happy to look over your property and determine areas that are optimal for these types of plants.


Our designers can take a look at your property and see if yarrow’s needs can be met. We create a design plan for all of our consultations to determine what plants and needs match each individual property. Yarrow (which comes in a wide variety of colors) makes an excellent addition to colorful gardens, with their eye-catching bright flowers. Their clustered leaves and umbrella like shape on the top of long stocks makes them a unique favorite in the landscape. Creative Concepts Landscape will help to determine the best location on your property, or create the conditions to promote a healthy, beautiful garden.


Yarrow has low water requirements once established. After they are established (at around one year after planting), they will still need periodic watering, usually once a week. The soil around their roots should dry out between waterings, or you run the very real risk of overwatering. Overwatering is one of the most common mistakes in yarrow care. They are naturalized to much of our region, thus their needs match the natural rhythms of our climate.


Yarrow needs well-draining soils, which much of the soil in Southern California has. They generally don’t need nutrient fertilizers. Some gardeners prefer to add a basic fertilizer, or compost, in early spring, however many skip the fertilization altogether because it can potentially encourage invasive spreading. Creative Concepts Landscape will determine what conditions would be best for yarrow in your landscape and make the necessary additions or changes.



Yarrow group planting


Pruning & Maintenance 


Yarrow has maintenance needs. It is best to remove spent flowers after they die and trim back long stocks are blooming. This will encourage healthy, renewed growth. These plants are drought tolerant, however providing supplemental water for these plants, especially while they are becoming established in the landscape, is often the highest maintenance requirement. Creative Concepts Landscape has been installing irrigation systems for over twenty years. We will be happy to schedule a consultation and come up with an irrigation system plan and install it. Creative Concepts landscape also repairs and refurbishes existing irrigation systems, so they are in optimal, efficient condition. Again, and we cannot stress this enough, once flannel bush is established, do not water them.


Creative Concepts Landscape has options for maintenance schedules. Many of our clients have us maintain their property weekly or two times a month, however we also offer periodic cleanups. These cleanups range from four times a year, twice a year, and sometimes once a year. We will be happy to talk with you and determine a maintenance/cleanup schedule that fits your property needs.


Yarrow attracts beneficial pollinators to your garden


Landscape Uses 


Yarrow is known for its unique flower clusters.  They can fit within many different landscape aesthetics, from Mediterranean gardens, chaparral gardens, butterfly gardens, and even desert themed gardens as a focal point. Creative Concepts Landscape will be happy to discuss their potential in your garden and recommend various cultivars. There are many different kinds of yarrow. Creative Concepts Landscape gets many requests for garden installations, of which yarrow can be a beautiful addition. Our team of designers and technicians has decades of experience designing and installing gardens.


Creative Concepts Landscape creates a landscape plan and design for your specific property characteristics along with your wants. Our highly experienced designers will be able to see what plant types and layout will complement your landscape’s existing features to come up with a planting design plan.


Yarrow makes an excellent, and eye catching, addition to the water wise garden.



Thank you for joining us again in this week’s horticultural adventures. Please come back next Wednesday for out next blog post, and as always, contact us for all your landscape needs!


By Daniel Williams

Client Liaison for Creative Concepts Landscape