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Field Wormwood

Artemisia campestris

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
For more information please download the BSBI Code of Conduct PDF document.


Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Asteraceae (Daisy)
Also in this family:
Alpine Blue Sow-thistle, Alpine Cotula, Alpine Fleabane, Alpine Saw-wort, Annual Ragweed, Annual Sunflower, Argentine Fleabane, Autumn Hawkbit, Autumn Oxeye, Beaked Hawksbeard, Beggarticks, Bilbao Fleabane, Black Knapweed, Black-eyed Susan, Blanketflower, Blue Fleabane, Blue Globe-thistle, Bristly Oxtongue, Broad-leaved Cudweed, Broad-leaved Ragwort, Brown Knapweed, Butterbur, Buttonweed, Cabbage Thistle, Canadian Fleabane, Canadian Goldenrod, Carline Thistle, Chalk Knapweed, Chamois Ragwort, Changing Michaelmas Daisy, Chicory, Chinese Mugwort, Chinese Ragwort, Coltsfoot, Common Blue Sow-thistle, Common Cat's-ear, Common Cudweed, Common Daisy, Common Dandelion, Common Fleabane, Common Goldenrod, Common Groundsel, Common Michaelmas Daisy, Common Mugwort, Common Ragwort, Common Wormwood, Coneflower, Confused Michaelmas Daisy, Corn Chamomile, Corn Marigold, Cornflower, Cotton Thistle, Cottonweed, Creeping Thistle, Daisy Bush, Dwarf Cudweed, Dwarf Thistle, Early Goldenrod, Eastern Groundsel, Eastern Leopardsbane, Elecampane, English Hawkweed, Fen Ragwort, Feverfew, Field Fleawort, Fox and Cubs, French Tarragon, Gallant Soldier, Garden Lettuce, Giant Butterbur, Glabrous-headed Hawkweed, Glandular Globe-thistle, Glaucous Michaelmas Daisy, Globe Artichoke, Globe-thistle, Goat's Beard, Golden Ragwort, Golden Samphire, Goldilocks Aster, Grass-leaved Goldenrod, Great Lettuce, Greater Burdock, Greater Knapweed, Grey-headed Hawkweed, Guernsey Fleabane, Hairless Blue Sow-thistle, Hairless Leptinella, Hairy Michaelmas Daisy, Harpur Crewe's Leopardsbane, Hawkweed Oxtongue, Heath Cudweed, Heath Groundsel, Hemp Agrimony, Highland Cudweed, Hoary Mugwort, Hoary Ragwort, Hybrid Knapweed, Intermediate Burdock, Irish Fleabane, Jersey Cudweed, Jerusalem Artichoke, Lance-leaved Hawkweed, Lavender-cotton, Leafless Hawksbeard, Least Lettuce, Leopardplant, Leopardsbane, Leptinella, Lesser Burdock, Lesser Hawkbit, Lesser Sunflower, London Bur-marigold, Magellan Ragwort, Marsh Cudweed, Marsh Hawksbeard, Marsh Ragwort, Marsh Sow-thistle, Marsh Thistle, Meadow Thistle, Melancholy Thistle, Mexican Fleabane, Milk Thistle, Mountain Everlasting, Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Musk Thistle, Narrow-leaved Cudweed, Narrow-leaved Hawkweed, Narrow-leaved Michaelmas Daisy, Narrow-leaved Ragwort, New England Hawkweed, New Zealand Holly, Nipplewort, Nodding Bur-marigold, Northern Hawksbeard, Norwegian Mugwort, Oxeye Daisy, Oxford Ragwort, Pearly Everlasting, Perennial Cornflower, Perennial Ragweed, Perennial Sow-thistle, Perennial Sunflower, Pineapple Mayweed, Plantain-leaved Leopardsbane, Ploughman's Spikenard, Plymouth Thistle, Pontic Blue Sow-thistle, Pot Marigold, Prickly Lettuce, Prickly Sow-thistle, Purple Coltsfoot, Rayed Tansy, Red Star Thistle, Red-seeded Dandelion, Red-tipped Cudweed, Robin's Plantain, Roman Chamomile, Rough Cocklebur, Rough Hawkbit, Rough Hawksbeard, Russian Lettuce, Safflower, Salsify, Saw-wort, Scented Mayweed, Scentless Mayweed, Sea Aster, Sea Mayweed, Sea Wormwood, Seaside Daisy, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Shaggy Soldier, Shasta Daisy, Shetland Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Shrub Ragwort, Sicilian Chamomile, Silver Ragwort, Slender Mugwort, Slender Thistle, Small Cudweed, Small Fleabane, Smooth Cat's-ear, Smooth Hawksbeard, Smooth Sow-thistle, Sneezeweed, Sneezewort, Spear Thistle, Spotted Cat's-ear, Spotted Hawkweed, Sticky Groundsel, Stinking Chamomile, Stinking Hawksbeard, Tall Fleabane, Tall Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Tansy, Thin-leaved Sunflower, Trifid Bur-marigold, Tuberous Thistle, Tyneside Leopardplant, Viper's Grass, Wall Lettuce, Welsh Groundsel, Welted Thistle, White Butterbur, White Buttons, Willdenow's Leopardsbane, Winter Heliotrope, Wood Burdock, Wood Ragwort, Woody Fleabane, Woolly Thistle, Yarrow, Yellow Chamomile, Yellow Fox and Cubs, Yellow Oxeye, Yellow Star Thistle, Yellow Thistle, York Groundsel
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
1 metre tall
Fields, grassland, heathland, roadsides, rocky places, wasteland, woodland.

Yellow, no petals
Small tubular, yellowish brown flowers, up to 4mm across. 5 stamens per flower.
The fruit is a light brown achene, up to 1mm long. An achene is a type of dry, one-seeded fruit. The seeds ripen from August to October.
Alternate, 2 to 3-pinnate leaves which are narrow and thread-like. Only the lower leaves are stalked. The fleshy leaves are hairy when young but become smooth and hairless with age. Perennial.
Other Names:
Beach Wormwood, Boreal Wormwood, Breckland Wormwood, Canadian Wormwood, Field Mugwort, Field Sagebrush, Field Sagewort, Field Southernwood, Northern Wormwood, Prairie Sagewort, Tall Wormwood, Western Mugwort.
Frequency (UK):
Rarely seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Artemisia campestris, commonly known as field wormwood or western mugwort, is a species of perennial herb in the Asteraceae family. It is native to Europe and Asia, typically found in grasslands and open fields. It has small, yellow or green flowers that bloom in the summer and leaves that are grayish-green and fragrant. The plant is also used as an ornamental plant in gardens, it is known for its ability to tolerate dry and poor soils, and it's tolerant to drought. It has been traditionally used in medicine and it has been used as a stimulant, tonic, diaphoretic, and diuretic. The plant has also been used in traditional medicine to treat a variety of ailments such as respiratory problems, digestive issues and menstrual cramps, but there is not enough scientific evidence to support its medicinal properties.


Field Wormwood (Artemisia campestris) is a species of aromatic plant that belongs to the genus Artemisia, which is widely distributed throughout the world. This plant is also known as Wild Wormwood, Prairie Sagewort, and Field Sagebrush.

Field Wormwood is a perennial plant that is commonly found in grasslands, prairies, and meadows. It grows up to 2-3 feet in height and produces yellow or white flowers during the summer. The plant has long, thin stems and fragrant, feathery leaves that are gray-green in color.

Field Wormwood has a long history of use in traditional medicine, and its active compounds have been used to treat a variety of ailments, including digestive problems, headaches, and menstrual cramps. In recent years, scientists have conducted studies to better understand the properties of Field Wormwood and its potential health benefits.

One of the key compounds in Field Wormwood is thujone, which is a naturally occurring compound that is present in the essential oil of the plant. Thujone has been shown to have antimicrobial and insecticidal properties, which makes it a useful ingredient in various products, including insecticides, deodorants, and other personal care products.

In addition to its medicinal properties, Field Wormwood is also widely used as a flavoring agent in the production of liqueurs, such as absinthe and vermouth. The plant's distinct aroma and bitter taste make it an important ingredient in these beverages, as well as other food and drink products.

Despite its many benefits, Field Wormwood should be used with caution, as it can be toxic if consumed in large quantities. It is important to consult with a healthcare provider before using Field Wormwood as a supplement or incorporating it into your diet in any form.

In conclusion, Field Wormwood is a versatile plant with a rich history of use in traditional medicine and as a flavoring agent. Its active compounds, including thujone, have been shown to have a range of health benefits, making it a valuable ingredient in various products. However, it is important to use Field Wormwood with caution, as it can be toxic if consumed in large quantities.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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