Achillea ptarmica (The Pearl Group)
Common Name: sneezewort 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asteraceae
Zone: 3 to 9
Height: 1.50 to 2.00 feet
Spread: 1.50 to 2.00 feet
Bloom Time: June to September
Bloom Description: White
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Naturalize
Flower: Showy, Good Cut, Good Dried
Leaf: Fragrant
Tolerate: Deer, Drought, Dry Soil, Shallow-Rocky Soil


Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soils in full sun. Tolerates some light shade. Plants do well in average garden soils and tolerate poor soils as long as drainage is good. Avoid heavy clays and moist, rich, fertile soils. Plants will tolerate hot, humid summers and drought. Plants are best sited in locations protected from strong winds. Divide clumps as needed (every 2-3 years) to maintain the vitality of the planting. Plants slowly spread by rhizomes and can naturalize into colonies over time.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Achillea ptarmica, commonly called sneezewort or sneezeweed, is a rhizomatous perennial featuring loose corymbs of small white flowers which bloom throughout summer on plants clad with sessile, linear to lanceolate, finely toothed leaves that are aromatic when crushed. Species plants are native to Europe and western Asia.

The genus name Achillea refers to Achilles, hero of the Trojan Wars in Greek mythology, who used the plant medicinally to stop bleeding and to heal the wounds of his soldiers.

Specific epithet is from Greek and refers to plants which caused sneezing.

The Pearl Group has a profusion of button-like, pure white, 1/2" wide, double flowers resembling pompons in large branched heads on stems up to 2 feet. Excellent cut and dried flower. Tolerant of summer heat and humidity.


No serious pest or disease problems. Does poorly in wet sites or in heavy, poorly drained soil. Although this cultivar is not as aggressive as the species, it is rhizomatous and tends to sprawl and appear weedy. To keep under control, divide plants every 2 to 3 years.


An easy to mass perennial which will provide excellent contrast and long bloom to borders, cottage gardens, wild gardens, naturalized areas or meadows. Good for low-maintenance areas.