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Yareta Peru.jpg
Yareta on slopes of Nevado Coropuna, Peru
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Apiales
Family: Apiaceae
Genus: Azorella
Species: A. compacta
Binomial name
Azorella compacta

Yareta or llareta (Azorella compacta, also known as "Llareta" in Spanish, and historically as Azorella yareta) is a flowering plant in the family Apiaceae native to South America. It grows in the Puna grasslands of the Andes in Peru, Bolivia, northern Chile, and western Argentina at altitudes between 3,200 and 4,500 metres (10,500 and 14,800 ft).[1]

Azorella compacta close-up.


Yareta is an evergreen perennial with pink or lavender flowers. The self-fertile flowers are hermaphroditic and are pollinated by insects.[citation needed]

The plant prefers sandy, well-drained soils. It can grow in nutritionally poor soils that are acidic, neutral, or basic (alkaline). Yareta is well-adapted to high insolation rates typical of the Andes highlands and cannot grow in shade. The plant's leaves grow into an extremely compact, dense mat that reduces heat loss. This mat grows near the ground where air temperature is one or two degrees Celsius higher than the mean air temperature. This temperature difference is a result of the longwave radiation re-radiated by the soil surface (which is usually dark gray to black in the Puna).[citation needed]

The yareta is estimated to grow approximately 1.5 centimetres (15 mm) per year.[2] Many yaretas are estimated to be over 3,000 years old.[3] It is traditionally harvested for fuel, but its very slow growth makes this practice highly non-sustainable.[4]


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