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Description for Artemisia dracunculus
Artemisia abrotanum, commonly called southernwood, is a perennial sub-shrub that typically grows on woody, upright-branching stems to form a 3-4â€™ tall bushy mound of ferny, strongly aromatic, medium to light green leaves, each of which is 1-3 times pinnately dissected into threadlike segments.
Planting and care
Best grown in organically rich, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun. Prefers a neutral soil. Avoid wet soils. Appreciates a sheltered location and year-round mulch in the St. Louis area. Established plants have drought tolerance.
Caring for Artemisia dracunculus
- Cut plants to the ground in early spring. Dividing the clumps every 3-4 years will help keep plants robust. Plants will thrive in dry heat, but generally dislike the hot and humid conditions of the deep South.
Avoid wet soils.
Typical uses of Artemisia dracunculus
Special features: Southernwood is an aromatic herb that is grown in herb gardens. It also may be effectively grown in borders or along walks or paths. Low hedge. Herb containers.
Culinary use: The young shoots were used to add flavour to pastries and puddings, while branches were used to dye wool a deep yellow hue.
Medicinal use: Southernwood is usually cultivated for its essential oil, which contains absinthol and is used in herbal teas, potpourris or medicinally.
Medicinally, southernwood herb plants were used as an antiseptic, astringent, stimulant and tonic, and have also been used to fight coughs, tumors and cancers.
There is some thought that southernwood Artemisia can also be used as an insect repellent.
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