Artemisia tilesii

Botanical  Name : Artemisia tilesii
Family : Asteraceae – Aster family
Genus : Artemisia L. – sagebrush
Species : Artemisia tilesii Ledeb. – Tilesius’ wormwood
Kingdom : Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom : Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision : Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division : Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class : Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass : Asteridae
Order : Asterales

Synonyms :Artemisia unalaskensis. Rydb.

Common Names :Tilesius’ wormwood, Aleutian mugwort.

Habitat : Native to E. Asia to North-western N. America. Grows in Open rocky or gravelly wet or dry sites, mostly at rather high elevations in the mountains, but descending at times to sea level, N. Montana to Alaska.

Description:
Artemisia tilesii is a perennial herb  growing to 1.5 m (5ft). It has  aromatic leaves, variable foliage. The genus, Artemisia, named after the Greek goddess of female energies. Artemisia includes wormwoods, absinth, sagebrush, mugwort, and tarragon. They are all aromatic and bitter herbs and shrubs.

click to see the pictures..
Stem is erect, a tall plant from 2′ to 4′, branched, from slender rhizome.The flowers are  yellowish-brown or yellowish-green, very small on many branched flower spikes that look like the center of a daisy, nodding, bracts have broad, dark margins.and the leaves are  large, dark green and shiny above, whitish gray, woolly beneath, deeply cut into 3 to 5 lobes, with slender sharp tips.

The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.

The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and requires well-drained soil.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils..It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade.It requires dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

Cultivation:
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Easily grown in a well-drained circumneutral or slightly alkaline loamy soil, preferring a warm sunny dry position. Established plants are drought tolerant. Plants are longer lived, more hardy and more aromatic when they are grown in a poor dry soil. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.

Propagation:
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. Division in spring or autumn. Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest the young shoots when about10 – 15cm long, pot up in a lightly shaded position in a greenhouse or cold frame and plant them out when well rooted. Very easy.

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Condiment.

The leaves are used for flavouring rice dumplings. The raw shoots are peeled and eaten, usually with oil.

Medicinal Uses:
Analgesic;  Antirheumatic;  Antitumor;  Disinfectant;  Haemostatic;  Laxative;  Poultice;  Skin;  Stomachic;  Tonic.

The plant is antirheumatic, antitumor, disinfectant, febrifuge, haemostatic, laxative and tonic. It is used in the treatment of cancer and to prevent infections in wounds etc. An infusion of the leaves and flowering tops is used as a laxative and to treat stomach aches. An infusion is used internally to treat rheumatism and is also applied externally to swollen joints. A poultice of the leaves is applied to skin infections and to cuts to stop the bleeding. A decoction is used as an eyewash. The plant has properties similar to codeine. The report does not specify which part of the plant is used. Codeine is used as a painkiller.

Healing and soothing ointment can be made from flower heads. Used in a steam bath for its fragrance and medicinal qualities. It is used to clear stuffed noses, for upset stomachs and to cure colds. It is a highly valued medicinal plant to the Dena’ina. They used them to rub on the bodies of pregnant women and make medicine switches to relieve arthritic and other aches. Made into a tea it is used to wash any kind of infection. Wrapped in a cloth it is used for toothache, earache and snow blindness. Athlete’s foot is washed in a tea and plants worn in the shoes fresh. It can be used for mosquito repellent. Try burning it in your campfire. It is used by Eskimo people against tumors and to reduce fevers. Used in Scandinavia, Germany, France, Switzerland, England, Bosnia, Russia, China, Tibet, India, Bali, Bolivia, Argentina and the US. Wormwood has a long history of use. It is mentioned in the Bible as a bitter herb used during Passover. It freshened the air and was used to repel fleas during the 16th century. It derives its common name from use as a human and animal de-wormer. Since medieval times it has been associated with magic and medicine. Snakes and evil of all kinds are supposed to be repelled by wormwood.

Caution: Wormwoods should be carefully used internally. The oil absinthol is present in the foliage of many Artemisias. Taken repeatedly in large doses it could cause coma and convulsions. Taken in small doses or used externally it should pose no problem.

Other Uses:
Disinfectant;  Incense.

The freshly crushed leaves can be rubbed on the hands to remove odours. The plant is used as an incense and deodorant in the home

Known Hazards: Although no reports of toxicity have been seen for this species, skin contact with some members of this genus can cause dermatitis or other allergic reactions in some people.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Artemisia+tilesii

http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=ARTI

http://www.cdhs.us/Flower%20Project/Family%20Index/Compositae%20Index/A.%20tilesii/A.%20tilesii%20Fset.htm

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