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Artemisia – how to grow, soil conditions and what care should be taken.

Artemisia is a genus of annual flowering herbs that grow in a shrub habit and are in the aster family. Colloquially, it is known as sweet sagewort, sweet annie and annual wormwood, its foliage is highly scented, and it blooms during the summer and early fall. It is a naturalized weed in many regions, but also cultivated in Africa as an alternative medicine for use in treating malaria. Artemisia is also grown for the cut and dried flower trade.

Characteristics of Artemisia

– Artemisia is a perennial and older, well-established plants are often woody in nature.
– Artemisia is primarily grown for the attractive and aromatic foliage and rarely flowers.
– Most artemisia grows between 2′ and 5′ tall depending on the species and variety.
– Most artemesia is fragrant.
– A common type of artemesia is dusty miller, which has silver-gray foliage and small yellow flowers.
– Artemesia has been used for medicinal purposes, for flavoring and to repel fleas and moths.
– The herb, tarragon, is from the artemisia family.
– Vermouth was originally flavored with wormwood, a type of artemesia.
– It is hardy to zone 7.
– It is in flower from August to September, and the seeds ripen from September to October.

Growing Conditions for Artemisia

– Artemisias tolerate drought, heat, and cold but not wet feet in winter. – They grow in any decent garden soil with good drainage.
– Plants perform best in full sun and become somewhat leggy in partial shade.
– It grows mostly in sunny, dry or semi-dry climates.
– Artemesia is usually grown from nursery stock; buy artemesia or dusty miller in 4 inch pots, 6 packs or gallon containers.
– Plant it in the winter or spring after the last frost, give it enough water to establish it and then continue to water it the same as other xeriscape or drought tolerant plants in your landscape.
– Artemesia can also be grown from cuttings from your own or neighbor’s plants.

Maintenance and Care

– Divide artemesia every two to three years to promote good, healthy growth.
– To do this, dig your plant up, divide the root ball and replant the plants 3 to 4 feet apart. You can do this in the spring before its growth spurt, or in the fall after cutting it back.


Low-growing types of artemisia can be used at the front of borders and in rock gardens. Tall types are good toward the back in flower borders and can be massed by themselves.

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