Wormwood - Artemisia absinthium

Scientific Name: Artemisia absinthium.

English Name: Wormwood.

French Name: Absinthe.

5 Key Characters:
  • very aromatic.
  • 30 - 90 cm tall.
  • leaf segments blunt tipped and silvery grey with silky hairs on both sides.
  • drooping yellow globular flowers in a pyramidal spike.
  • leaves deeply cut, with segments wider than 2 mm.
Lookalikes: Mugwort A. vulgaris, which has leaves with pointed tipped segments which are dark green on top and felty white below.

Habitat: Wasteground, uncultivated land, roadsides, rocks, scree and hedgerows.

Flowering Period: July-August-September.

Status: Fairly locally common around Preuilly-sur-Claise, but not present in the Brenne. Often naturalised in France, as it was the principal herb used to flavour the drink Absinthe and some vermouths. It was also used as a stimulant, vermifuge (worm treatment), insecticide and in brewing instead of hops. Its medicinal and commercial use is regulated.

Photographed by Loire Valley Nature:

Photographs are numbered from left to right and top to bottom. All photos enlarge in a new window if you click on them. 1 on a roadside bank near Preuilly-sur-Claise.

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