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Feverfew

The people of ancient Greece originally used feverfew, a southeastern European native, to dispel fevers – hence its name. With white petals and yellow button centers, feverfew’s flowers look a bit like chamomile, but its bitter odor and yellow-green leaves confirm feverfew as another herb entirely. Feverfew (Chrysanthemum parthenium) is a member of the daisy family. Known for its anti-inflammatory properties, feverfew has had countless medical uses, including the treatment of migraine headaches, arthritis, digestive problems, menstrual and labor irregularities, and asthma. In the garden feverfew serves as a natural insect repellent (including bees). It is also used to make dried wreaths and flower arrangements, as well as a from-scratch, greenish-yellow dye.

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by Heidi StrawnFebruary 4, 2011
PHOTO: Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock

Size: 2 to 3 feet tall

Sunlight requirements: Best in full sun, but does tolerate partial shade

Water requirements: water regularly

Soil requirements: Average, well-drained soil with a pH of 6.3

When to plant: Indoors: seeds can be planted in February; Outdoors: Spring

Where to plant: Garden; containers

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When to harvest: Between July and August. Harvest flowers at full bloom.

Produce storage: Dry flowers upside down in dark, dry and airy place. Dry or freeze leaves.

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