Central/ Eastern Europe
Latin Name: Artemisia vulgaris syn. Absinthium spicatum, Artemisia affinis, Artemisia coarctata, Artemisia officinalis.
Plant Family: Asteraceae
Other Names: Common Mugwort, Beidiog Lwyd, Felon Herb, St. John's Plant, Mater Herbarum, Cingulum Sancti Johannis, Gemeiner Beifuss, Herbe aux Cent Goûts, Nagadamni, Sailor's Tobacco, Tabac de Saint-Pierre & Wild Wormwood.
Description: This shrubby herbaceous perennial plant can be found growing in most of the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere; it grows to a height of up to 2 metres. The tall erect stems have a purple tint to them; the leaves are 5–20 cm long, dark green and pinnate on the upper side, the undersides are white and downy. The individual flowers are white and downy in bud opening to have greenish bell shaped ‘sheaves’ with yellowish bracts in the centre approximately 2.5mm in diameter, they form clusters of upright racemose panicles.
Brief History: Iron age people drank ale made from mugwort and it was one of the 9 sacred herbs of the Anglo-Saxon’s. Mugwort’s Latin genus name ‘artemisia’ is said to have been given to honour Artemis the Greek Goddess of the Hunt, Forests and Hills, and the Moon. The physicians of Myddfai in 13th century Wales recommended drinking ale based brews laced with mugwort, fennel and mint to cure hysteria.
SUGGESTED USEAn infusion of the dried plant can be used to make a natural insect repelling/insecticidal spray for occasional use; too much may impede plant growth. The dried leaf can be used as a substitute for tea and added in small amounts to stuffing’s to accompany fatty meats and game.
Shelf life of two years provided that goods are stored in an airtight container in ambient conditions.
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