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April 2011
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Artemisia arbuscula – also known as little sagebrush, low sagebrush, or black sagebrush

Artemisia arbuscula which is also known as little sagebrush, low sagebrush, or black sagebrush is a dwarf sagebrush which can grow up to a height of 4 to 16 inches (10-40 cm). It is a perennial shrub that is native to the western United States from Washington to California to Colorado. It is a shrub that is gray-green in color and it forms mounds of height 30 cm. It has hairy leaves which are a cm or less in length and are cleft. They are 5-15 mm in length and 3-10 mm in width and 3-5 toothed at the apex.
The flower heads are hairy and in array of clusters that are spike shaped. There are 4 to 9 flowers per head and has 1.5cm wide and narrow panicle. The fruit is an mm in width. This is an evergreen and branching shrub which has erect stalks and low spreading. The spread of the crown is about 16 to 32 inches. This herb has fibrous root system which is about 8 inches and which is shallow and extensive for good absorption of water.
The stems are in form of twigs which has Light to dark brown bark and canescent.
This plant has a strong aroma and the taste is bitter. It has terpenoids and sesquiterpene lactones which gives the herb its bitter taste. The flowers are pollinated by wind and by butterflies. The herb is used as a food plant by Lepidoptera species larvae.
It is used in flavoring and an important herb in French cuisine.
It is used to treat cough, fever, colic, headache, to intestinal parasites and malaria.
It is used in enemas, poultices, infusions, lotions, inhaled (e.g. smoked or snuffed), or as an essential oil and to repel moths and fleas from clothes and for brewing. It is also used as a stomachic, febrifuge and anthelmintic.
The word “Artemisia” comes from the Greek god, Artemis.
This plant needs full sun to partial shade and well drained soil.
Mulching the plant around is needed to retain moisture and temperature maintained that is ideal for the plant.

Growing conditions for Artemisia arbuscula

• Plant in a sunny location.
• Alaskan Wormwood needs full sun to partial shade.
• Dig a hole of 6 to 8 inches to plant.
• Add 2-4 inches of compost or manure to the planting soil.
• The plant’s root ball should fit the hole.
• Keep the soil moist and for good growth water occasionally especially in hot and dry weather.
• Fertilize Alaskan wormwood using liquid or general fertilizer every spring.
• Mulch the plant around to about 2-3 inch. This is to retain moisture and to maintain soil temperature.
• Divide the plant every 2-3 years for new growth.

Care for Artemesia arbuscula

• This Wormwood tolerates poor soil.
• This Wormwood needs full sun to partial shade.
• This Wormwood is not affected by many diseases or pests.
• Do not keep the plant wet or soggy as it develops root rot.
• Prune the plant and divide 2-3 years.
• Fertilize once a year with a spray of liquid fertilizer.
• Plant this wormwood about 2-3 inches away from other plants.

Images of this plant on Google Search.

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