Part of the sunflower family, Achillea millefolium grows in full sun, but if used for a lawn substitute, usually is more satisfactory through the summer with a bit of shade, unless on the coast. As it is soft to the touch and spreads through rhizomes, we are experimenting with using it as part of a grassless “coastal lawn,” with other low-growing native herbaceous species, like coast strawberry, Pt. Reyes checkerbloom, and coast lotus.
For light traffic, not a soccer field. Cut every few months, don’t allow to go to seed. Leaves are aromatic, and foliage color ranges from dark green to silver gray. If let bloom in spring and early summer, its flowers will attract bees and butterflies. It is also found in Europe, and in California, local forms should be treasured.