Magazine article Landscape & Irrigation

Artemisia Sp. - Wormwood. (Plant Palette)

Magazine article Landscape & Irrigation

Artemisia Sp. - Wormwood. (Plant Palette)

Article excerpt

The Chicago Botanic Garden has released results of a four-year comparative study of Artemisia, or wormwood, a diverse genus of herbaceous and shrubby species from a variety of climatic regions around the world.

The primary goal of the study was to observe ornamental characteristics, winter hardiness and cultural requirements of 26 Artemisia species, cultivars and garden hybrids, and to determine the best artemisias for Midwest gardens.

The findings are revealed in the 19th issue of the Chicago Botanic Garden's "Plant Evaluation Notes," which provides the latest information on various plant species particularly suited to the Midwest's tough climate and rigorous growing conditions.

Artemisias come in an array of plant habits and sizes, ranging from a few inches to eight feet tall, and spreading from one to six feet wide. Stems can be woody or herbaceous; plants can be clumping or rhizomatous, with habits that are upright, bushy, low-mounded or ground-hugging. Artemisia leaves are typically dissected; gray or white, although sometimes green; hairy and aromatic.

Artemisia is a member of the aster family (Asteraceae) and is closely related to other garden perennials, such as yarrow (Achillea), golden marguerite (Anthemis) and tansy (Tanacetum). Many species are native to arid or Mediterranean-like climates and are aptly suited to sunny, dry infertile gardens. Silver-leaved artemisias are best grown in full sun in well-drained soils with low fertility. …

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