Yarrow: sleep aid and pain killer from the forest


Greg Knight

The yarrow plant, which grows wild on many parts of Wrangell Island, and extensively on Chief Shakes Island, is a natural remedy used by many Southeast Alaska Natives.

For many Natives in Southeast Alaska the use of natural herbs and plants is as essential today as it was to their ancestors in years past – and whether they are used to alleviate pain, or help as a dietary supplement, the wild medicine of Wrangell’s forests and wilds are abundant.

One of the most common plants in Wrangell’s pantheon is yarrow. It grows nearly everywhere on the island and is identifiable by its feathery leaves and fine-tooth hairs along the stem. It is also identifiable by its smell, which has been described as akin to chrysanthemum flowers.

Some of the main uses of ya...

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