Growing Artemisia

This page talks about growing artemisia and its benefits.

Artemisia, also known as wormwood, is a flowering perennial native to Asia.  There is some researching currently into the potential benefits of artemisia in treating asthma.  Sweet Annie has fern-like leaves, bright yellow flowers, and a strong sweet scent, while other varieties may differ in appearance.  They quite hardy, do well in a variety of soil conditions and make great additions to flower beds, herb gardens or as border or background plants.  Artemisia grows 48 to 72 inches tall.  It blooms in late summer.

Due to its long maturation period, it is recommended that you start artemisia indoors.  Start planting 6 to 8 weeks before the last frost.  Barely cover the seeds.  Do not pour water over the seeds, as it will bury them too deeply in the soil.  Instead, place your pots into a tray and pour water into the tray. The soil in the pots will draw water up through the soil in the pots and keep the seeds moist.  Alternatively, you can mist the seeds to keep them moist.  Use a grow light.

Once the plants have their second set of true leaves, move them into larger containers.  Once the threat of the frost has passed, you can begin getting ready to transplant them.  Before planting them outside, “harden them off” by gradually increasing the amount of time they spend outside so that they can adjust to the change in “climate.”

Choose a sunny spot in your garden with well-drained soil.  Turn the top 4 to 6 inches of soil, break up dirt clumps and mix in compost.  Space the plants 12 to 24 inches apart.  Artemisia matures in 120 days.  Once established, artemisia requires very little care, other than watering.  You can fertilizer once a year.  Artemisia isn’t susceptible to many diseases other than root rot from excessively wet soil.  It readily self-seeds.

Artemisia can also be grown in containers and while not recommended, it can be directly sown as well.  To grow outdoors, wait until the threat of frost has passed.  Choose a sunny spot in your garden with well draining soil.  Barely cover seeds and keep them moist.  Once the plants begin developing, thin out so that there is 12 to 24 inches between each plant.

You can harvest the flowers once they have developed.  To dry flowers, cut stems and tie in bunches.  Hang upside-down in a dry, cool place out of sunlight.  They should be fully dry in 2 to 3 weeks.  To harvest the seeds, wait until the flowers have fully developed and begin drying on the stem. 

More on Growing Artemisia

Cut the plants down, leaving some for next year’s growth.  Put the flowering ends into a paper bag and let them dry completely in a cool place.  Gently beat the seed pods to release the seeds into a bowl or bag.

Artemisia makes wonderful cut flower bouquets and can be used in dried flower arrangements and seasonal wreaths. 

Click here to check out our selection of artemisia seeds.

       Go to Herbs from Growing Artemisia

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