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Feverfew

Tanacetum parthenium

Bachelor's buttons (double form), Maids, Maithes, Pale maids, Pellitory

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Feverfew is a compact perennial herb with citrus-scented leaves and small daisy-like flowers. It has traditionally been cultivated as a medicinal plant and is commonly used to prevent migraine headaches. Feverfew is also an excellent insect repellent and often planted along the edges of plant beds.

Planning

Difficulty
Easy
Flowering time
Spring, Summer, Autumn
Fruiting time
Autumn

Harvesting

Leaves and flowers can be harvested throughout the year. Cut the feverfew when the flowers are in full bloom. Tie the feverfew bundle at its stems with some twine and hang the bundle upside down to dry it. Feverfew will dry out best in a dark, airy and dry place.

Propagation

Seed
Start by planting the seeds indoors in containers in late winter and set out the seedlings in spring. Taking them outdoors, set plants at least 30 cm apart in all directions.
Cuttings
Cuttings should be made from the young shoots that start from the base of the plant. Insert into soil during Spring while cool.
Division
To propagate by division, lift the plants whenever the roots are in an active condition. With a sharp spade, divide them into three or five fairly large pieces.

Special features

Crop rotation
Practice a three-year cycle of Feverfew crop rotation.
Repels harmful insects
Feverfew acts as a repellent in the garden and keeps mosquitoes, gnats, ticks & fleas away.

Geography

Origin
Eurasia
Natural climate
Warm and moist

Environment

Light
Full Sun
Soil moisture
Moist
Soil type
Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil PH preference
Acid
Frost hardiness
Tender

Uses

Medicinal
Feverfew has been used as a herbal treatment to reduce fever and to treat headaches, arthritis and digestive problems.
Edible
The dried flowers can be made into a lovely tea or added to pies for an aromatic flavour.
Notes
Medicinal, insect repellant

Personality

Family
Asteraceae
Flower colour
White with yellow centre.
Scent
Mild

Problems

Pests include snails, slugs and the black fly. Using lime may deter them.

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