Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Mugwort
Artemisia douglasiana

Family: Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Artemisia (ar-te-MIZ-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: douglasiana (dug-lus-ee-AN-uh) (Info)

One member has or wants this plant for trade.


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
Pale Yellow

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall
Mid Fall
Late Fall/Early Winter


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)
7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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By Kelli
Thumbnail #1 of Artemisia douglasiana by Kelli

By Kelli
Thumbnail #2 of Artemisia douglasiana by Kelli

By Kelli
Thumbnail #3 of Artemisia douglasiana by Kelli

By palmbob
Thumbnail #4 of Artemisia douglasiana by palmbob


1 positive
2 neutrals
2 negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Negative JennyAnne On Sep 1, 2014, JennyAnne from Dudley, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:

Mugwort..... This plant should be illegal to sell! It is easily the MOST invasive plant on the planet! A bird must have dropped a seed, or a piece of this plant must have come in a load of mulch I had delivered... I never planted it, did not recognize it, but left this SINGLE stalk alone in my huge perennial garden for one season to see if it would flower. (I've got columbine that appeared in my garden out go nowhere this way) well... This single plant grew over spring and summer and went dormant over fall and winter, only to appear EVERYWHERE in the spring! Thousands of plants on complicated runner highways underground took over my garden. Yes, I pulled and pulled and pulled. I hired a landscaping company to pull it also. We sprayed it, burned it, and covered it with thick black tarps. Yes, it returned over and over again. I finally hired a company to come in and dig out my entire perennial garden with a backhoe! I now have a huge raised garden in its place, and I had to begin my 30+ years garden all over again!
Mugwort is an herb and if you think mint is invasive, you haven't seen anything!
NEVER plant this in your yard! There also is no substantial flowers to speak of. I can't imagine why anyone would want this in there garden!

Positive Siirenias On Jul 25, 2014, Siirenias from Oak Park, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

This is a somewhat common plant, native to western North America. Its native range is often associated with Toxicodendron diversilobum or Poison Oak, and anywhere with enough moisture for vigorous Poison Oak growth has enough moisture for Mugwort to grow. In California, it thrives in riparian habitat and some coastal communities. I've seen man-high stands of Mugwort up in Santa Barbara alongside invasive Castor in semi-open chaparral.

Good for soil retention on slopes that either get at least good fog moisture or shade. It spreads by rhizome. In hot, dry climates, it's a slow spreader and population control is no problem. Apparently, it is a much greater problem in places that get regular rain.

Mugwort will often present itself either as lobed-leaved or simple-leaved, but sometimes a change in conditions will cause it to change over part-way through the growing season. Color varies from a yellow green on both sides to a rich, dark green on top and white underside. All this variation can be observed from a single stand of Mugwort, especially in a garden setting where artificial watering and uneven shade are common.

Western Mugwort is a pleasant foliage and medicinal plant, grown primarily for its pleasantly fragrant foliage. Its inconspicuous flower clusters mark the end of the growing season, and is often harvested then unless seeds are desired. The plant is viable until the seeds ripen, at which point the flowering shoots have a tendency to wither until thaw.

Negative cathy166 On Nov 11, 2013, cathy166 from Stamford, CT (Zone 6b) wrote:

This horrible plant sends underground runners that are impossible to contain. I rue the day the former owner planted it along with houttuynia. I can pull and pull, to no end. It just pulls up a 20-inch root that is growing elsewhere in the same bed.

Neutral Kamanjah On Dec 10, 2011, Kamanjah from Rancho Calaveras, CA wrote:

I'm not growing this plant, it grows wild on our property. There seem to be two different varieties, one with the lobed leaves and one with the straight leaves shown in the photo with the flowers. The straight leaved ones are quite a bit more fragrant when dried, but the lobed ones are more fragrant when used for smudging.

Does anyone know if these are both douglasiana?


Neutral skhamby On Apr 7, 2011, skhamby from Lancing, TN wrote:

In my east TN garden, this plant has become a nightmare. It is by far the most invasive plant I've ever dealt with next to lirirope. Spreads via long runners that pop up anywhere and everywhere. I planted two little mounds 3 years ago and am pulling them up 20 feet from the orignial planting site. So- if you want a 3 foot tall plant that spreads like wildfire, go for it. If you don't, then beware mugwort. I give it a neutral rating simply because I should have researched the plant before purchase and thus avoided this battle.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Cornville, Arizona
Hawthorne, California
Los Angeles, California
Malibu, California
Mokelumne Hill, California
Oak Park, California
San Francisco, California
Stamford, Connecticut
Wilton, Connecticut
Mount Dora, Florida
Dudley, Massachusetts
Ogdensburg, New York
Lancing, Tennessee

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