This tough plant produces pretty, long-lasting flowers that attract scores of pollinators.

Color Combinations

Originally, yarrow flowers only came in drab whites and creams. Today you can find them in an array of colors, such as soft pinks, bright yellows, rich reds, and warm apricot. All these shades are shown off well against the plant's silver-green foliage. The leaves themselves are finely dissected and form tight mats that slowly spread. The blooms of yarrow also make long-lasting cut flowers that can be easily dried.

Yarrow Care Must-Knows

Yarrow is extremely easy to grow and requires little maintenance in order for it to thrive. The most important thing to know is that yarrow will not do well in wet soils, so make sure to plant it in well-drained soil. Once established, yarrow is extremely drought tolerant, making it a great plant for use in low-maintenance, dry gardens.

While it tolerates some shade, yarrow will do best in full sun. In any less light than that, it will be more prone to flopping stems. Too much shade can also lead to disease problems. Powdery mildew is fairly common in older varieties of yarrow; luckily it is mostly a cosmetic problem, and plants will rarely die from it.

Some yarrows spread quite aggressively by underground rhizomes. These rhizomes can grow densely and create heavy mats of foliage and roots, which is helpful for weed suppression, but it can also choke out other plants you're trying to grow in your garden. If you are hesitant about planting them because of this, look for varieties that are less aggressive, and place them where their spread can be more easily contained.

New Innovations

Current breeding work has been focused on improving the flaws of yarrow. The biggest change has been creating dwarf varieties of plants that won't flop or break in the wind. Color options are getting richer as well, as many varieties are branching out from the pastel palette. New yarrow types also boast longer bloom times and blooms that repeat all season; be sure to cut back spent flowers to help them in the long run.

More Varieties of Yarrow

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Yarrow Overview

Description Yarrow is a classic garden perennial known for its ruggedness. It shrugs off cold winters, hot and humid summers, drought, and poor soils to cheerfully bloom in sunny places. With its tall stems of colorful flowers and fern-like foliage, it works especially well in a cottage garden setting and in wildflower gardens.
Genus Name Achillea
Common Name Yarrow
Plant Type Herb, Perennial
Light Sun
Height 6 to 12 inches
Width 2 to 3 feet
Flower Color Orange, Pink, Red, White, Yellow
Foliage Color Blue/Green, Gray/Silver
Season Features Fall Bloom, Spring Bloom, Summer Bloom, Winter Interest
Special Features Attracts Birds, Good for Containers, Low Maintenance
Zones 10, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
Propagation Division, Seed
Problem Solvers Deer Resistant, Drought Tolerant, Groundcover, Slope/Erosion Control
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Anthea yarrow

anthea yarrow
Blaine Moats

Achillea 'Anblo' is a hybrid yarrow that bears 3-inch-wide clusters of soft primrose-yellow blooms that fade to cream. The plant has silvery-gray foliage and is resistant to powdery mildew, making it a good choice for regions with high humidity. It grows 18-24 inches tall and wide. Zones 4-9

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'Appleblossom' yarrow

'Appleblossom' yarrow
Tom McWilliam

Achillea millefolium 'Appleblossom' is a fast-spreading plant with pale pink blooms and grayish-green feathery leaves. Zones 3-9

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'Apricot Delight' yarrow

'Apricot Delight' yarrow
Dean Schoeppner

Achillea millefolium 'Apricot Delight' bears reddish, apricot-color blooms that fade to lovely shades of peachy coral as they age. The long-blooming flowers form on compact plants. Zones 3-9

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'Cerise Queen' yarrow

'Cerise Queen' yarrow
Andy Lyons

Achillea millefolium 'Cerise Queen' produces pretty, magenta-pink blooms in late spring to early summer that hover over fernlike green foliage. Zones 3-9

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Common yarrow

Common yarrow
Marty Baldwin

Achillea millefolium is a drought-tolerant native plant with ferny green foliage and white flower clusters in summer. It is also deer-resistant and attracts butterflies. The spreading clumps of common yarrow grow 1-3 feet tall. Another common name for the plant is bloodwort, a reference to its historical use as a topical wound dressing. Zones 3-9

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Fernleaf yarrow

Fernleaf yarrow

Achillea filipendulina offers finely cut gray-green foliage and reaches 3-5 feet tall. It bears mustard-yellow flowers in mid to late summer. Zones 3-9

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'Paprika' yarrow

'Paprika' yarrow
Marty Baldwin

Achillea millefolium 'Paprika' blooms in brilliant scarlet red with a distinctive yellow eye. With age, the flowers take on a pink hue. The plant blooms all summer if deadheaded. Zones 3-9

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'Wonderful Wampee' yarrow

'Wonderful Wampee' yarrow
Denny Schrock

Achillea millefolium Tutti Frutti 'Wonderful Wampee' blooms from early to late summer with light pink flower clusters that mature to apple-blossom pink. The drought- and heat-tolerant plants don't melt down in summer's heat. 'Wonderful Wampee' grows 18-24 inches tall and wide, gradually spreading to form large clumps. Zones 3-9

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'Pomegranate' yarrow

'Pomegranate' yarrow
Denny Schrock

Achillea millefolium Tutti Frutti 'Pomegranate' has deep red blooms that hold their color well in the garden. If deadheaded after the first flush of bloom, plants push out additional flowers until a hard freeze in fall. 'Pomegranate' yarrow grows 24-30 inches tall and wide. Zones 3-9

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'Pink Grapefruit' yarrow

'Pink Grapefruit' yarrow
Blooms of Bressingham

Achillea millefolium 'Pink Grapefruit' is a compact, vigorous plant with large domed flowers that open deep pink and slowly change to creamy rose. Zones 3-9

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'Strawberry Seduction' yarrow

'Strawberry Seduction' yarrow
Scott Little 

Achillea millefolium 'Strawberry Seduction' shows off velvety-red blooms with bright gold centers that fade to maize-yellow as they age. Zones 3-9

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Woolly yarrow

Woolly yarrow
Dean Schoeppner

Achillea tomentosa 'Lemon' bears clear yellow flowers in early summer that appear over the 6-inch-tall foliage that's covered in soft, silvery hairs. Zones 4-8

Yarrow Companion Plants

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Peter Krumhardt

Daylilies are so easy to grow you'll often find them in ditches and fields, escapees from gardens. And yet they look so delicate, producing glorious trumpet-shape blooms in numerous colors. There are some 50,000 named hybrid cultivars in a range of flower sizes (the minis are very popular), forms, and plant heights. Some are fragrant. The flowers are borne on leafless stems. Although each bloom lasts but a single day, superior cultivars carry several buds on each scape so bloom time is long, especially if you deadhead daily. The strappy foliage may be evergreen or deciduous.

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husker red penstemon
Jay Wilde

This North American native plant has a home in nearly every garden with flowers that hummingbirds love. Long blooming with brilliantly colored, tubular flowers, penstemons have been a staple in European gardens for decades. There are many different penstemon types. The leaves can be lance-shape or oval, sometimes purple-red as in 'Husker Red'. Some Western species need outstanding drainage to dry conditions, and they won't thrive during wet weather. Many, such as 'Husker Red', thrive in a wide variety of conditions. Just be sure to provide excellent drainage. Mulch in areas where plants are marginally hardy.

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Stephen Cridland

There are hundreds of different types of salvias, commonly called sage, but they all tend to share beautiful, tall flower spikes and attractive, often gray-green leaves. Countless sages (including the herb used in cooking) are available to decorate ornamental gardens, and new selections appear annually. They are valued for their very long season of bloom, right up until frost. Not all are hardy in cold climates, but they are easy to grow as annuals. On square stems, clothed with often-aromatic leaves, sages carry dense or loose spires of tubular flowers in bright blues, violets, yellow, pinks, or red that mix well with other perennials in beds and borders. Provide full sun or very light shade, in well-drained average soil.

Garden Plans for Yarrow

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Walk to Front Door Garden Plan

Walk to front door garden 
Illustration by Mavis Augustine Torke

The addition of flowers brings life to an unimaginative row of shrubs and turns the front walk into a garden path.

Download this plan now!

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Extra-Easy Sun-Loving Garden Plan

garden illustration
Illustration by Gary Palmer

Fill your garden with color from easy-care favorites such as purple coneflower and yarrow.

Click here to get this garden plan.

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Cottage Garden Plan

Illustration of Cottage Garden Plan
Illustration by Mavis Augustine Torke

Capturing the old-fashioned charm of an English cottage garden, this border planting is lush, colorful, and full of familiar favorites, such as hollyhocks, roses, daisies, and peonies.

Get this garden plan!

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Summer Cottage Garden Plan

Summer Cottage Garden Plan
Illustration by Mavis Augustine Torke

Stately delphiniums are the backbone of this colorful cottage garden plan.

Click here to get this garden plan.

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Property Line Garden

Property Line Bed
Illustration by Mavis Augustine Torke

This stylish border features a sophisticated color palette. The perennials in the design, chosen for their long season of bloom, offer flowers in violet-blue and yellow shades.

Download this garden plan!

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Sensational Summer Garden Plan

garden illustration
Illustration by Gary Palmer

These heat- and drought-tolerant plants will make your yard a shining star all summer long.

Click here to get this plan.

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Fall-Color Garden Plan

Fall Garden Plan Illustration
Illustration by Gill Tomblin

This colorful flower garden looks great all season long, but really struts its stuff when autumn arrives.

Get this plan now!

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Colorful Slope Garden Plan

Drought Tolerant Slope Garden Plan
Illustration by Mavis Augustine Torke

Transform a tough hillside into drifts of color with show stopping results.

Download this garden plan!

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