Botanical Name : Artemisia maritima
Kingdom : Plantae
*Artemisia pseudogallica (Rouy) A.W.Hill
*Artemisia salina Willd.
Common Names: Sea wormwood and Old woman.
Habitat : Artemisia maritima is native to coastal regions of France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Belgium, Germany, Sweden and Russia.It grows on the drier parts of salt marshes in sand and shingle.
Artemisia maritima is a deciduous Shrub growing to 0.6 m (2ft). It is in flower from Aug to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Wind.Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in saline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.
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Succeeds in any soil but prefers a poor dry soil with a warm aspect. Easily grown in a well-drained circumneutral or slightly alkaline loamy soil, preferring a sunny position. Plants are longer lived, more hardy and more aromatic when they are grown in a poor dry soil. Tolerates a pH in the range 6.0 to 7.6. Dislikes shade. Established plants are very drought tolerant. Tolerates maritime exposure. The whole plant has a sweet aromatic smell. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.
Seed – surface sow from late winter to early summer in a greenhouse, making sure that the compost does not dry out. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. Division in spring or autumn.
Edible Uses: Condiment….The leaves are occasionally used as a flavouring. Some caution is advised, see the notes below on toxicity.
Anthelmintic; Antiseptic; Antispasmodic; Carminative; Cholagogue; Emmenagogue; Febrifuge; Stimulant; Stomachic; Tonic; Vermifuge.
Sea wormwood is not much used in herbal medicine, though it is often used domestically. Its medicinal virtues are similar to wormwood, A. absinthum, though milder in their action. It is used mainly as a tonic to the digestive system, in treating intermittent fevers and as a vermifuge. The leaves and flowering shoots are anthelmintic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, cholagogue, emmenagogue, febrifuge, stimulant, stomachic, tonic and vermifuge. The plant is harvested as it comes into flower and is dried for later use. The unexpanded floral heads contain the vermicide ‘santonin’.
The growing shoots are said to repel insects and mice, they have also been used as a strewing herb. An infusion is said to discourage slugs and insects
Known Hazards: The following notes are from a report on the closely related A. absinthum, they quite possibly also apply to this species. The plant is poisonous if used in large quantities. Even small quantities have been known to cause nervous disorders, convulsions, insomnia etc. Just the scent of the plant has been known to cause headaches and nervousness in some people.
Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.