Feverfew

feverfew-tanacetum-partheniumA perennial herb that grows best in zones 5-7, reaching a height of 1-2 feet. From June to August it blooms with an abundance of yellow and white daisy-like flowers. When grown in overly hot climates, grows as a biennial. Plant in full sunlight with well-draining soil conditions. Easily grows in clay, sandy conditions or loam. Maintain moist soil conditions. The plant does not tolerate drought and will easily die or become leggy if it does not receive plenty of water. Prune away spent flower heads. Both the leaves and flowers are used.

History
Native to central and south-eastern Europe, Feverfew is now widespread throughout Europe, North America, and Australia. It has a flower that closely resembles the daisy and is a member of the same family, Asteraceae. It belongs to all four of the main herb categories: aromatic, ornamental, culinary, and medicinal. Don’t be confused by its Latin designation, it is known by both Tanacetum parthenium or Chrysanthemum parthenium. It also has the synonuyms of Aphanostephus pinulensis, Matricaria parthenium and Parthenium matricaria. Its common name Feverfew derives from a corruption of Febrifuge, meaning ‘fever reducer’ from its tonic and fever-dispelling properties, although it is no longer considered useful for that purpose. Other common names include Featherfoil, Featherfew, Flirtwort and Bachelor’s Buttons.

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