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Useful Tropical Plants

Artemisia afra

Jacq. ex Willd.

Asteraceae

+ Synonyms

Absinthium ponticum (L.) Garsault

Absinthium tenuifolium Gaterau

Artemisia altaica Desf.

Artemisia balsamita Willd.

Artemisia grandiflora Fisch. ex Herder

Artemisia pallida Salisb.

Artemisia pontica Burm.f.

Artemisia pseudopontica Schur

Artemisia tenuifolia Moench

Common Name: African Wormwood

Artemisia afra
Simon Langison with a young plant in his garden. The leaves are used to ease coughing.
Photograph by: Scamperdale
Creative Commons License
Artemisia afra Artemisia afra Artemisia afra Artemisia afra

General Information

African wormwood is a strongly aromatic, clump-forming, perennial plant with stems that are woody at the base and can persist. It can grow from 30cm to 2 metres tall[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
,
328
Title
African Flowering Plants Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.ville-ge.ch/musinfo/bd/cjb/africa/recherche.php
Publisher
Conservatoire et Jardin Botaniques.
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Contains information on over 150,000 plant names (including synonyms) giving a description and habitat, plus a distribution map.
].
The plant is a widely used traditional medicine in Africa.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References


Range

Africa - S. Africa north to Angola in the west, to Ethiopia in the east.

Habitat

Damp slopes, along streamsides and forest margins at elevations of 20 - 2,440 metres[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].

Properties

Medicinal Rating *  *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitPerennial
Height1.00 m
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details

A plant of drier areas in the subtropics and tropics, where it is found at elevations up to 3,000 metres. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 22 - 30°c, but can tolerate 12 - 35°c[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
]. It prefers growing in areas with a distinct dry season and a mean annual rainfall in the range 550 - 750mm, but tolerates 400 - 900mm[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
].
Requires a position in full sun in a well-drained, fertile, light to medium soil[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
,
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
]. Prefers a pH in the range 5.5 - 6, tolerating 5 - 7[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
].
The plant has a strong, sticky sweet smell that it exudes when touched or cut[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].
Heavy pruning in the dormant season encourages plenty of new lush growth[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].
A fast-growing plant, established shrubs are very tough and will slowly spread to form thicker clumps[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal

African wormwood is a very bitter tasting herb that is one of the oldest and best known medicinal plants of S. Africa, and is still used effectively there today by people of all cultures[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].
The leaves and young flowering stems are anthelmintic, stimulant, stomachic and tonic[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
]. They are used to treat a wide range of ailments from coughs, colds, fever, loss of appetite, colic, headache, earache, intestinal worms to malaria[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].
The herb is taken in many different ways, one of the most common practices is to insert fresh leaves into the nostrils to clear blocked nasal passages[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
]. The roots, stems and leaves are also taken as enemas, poultices, infusions, body washes, lotions, smoked, snuffed or drunk as a tea[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].

Leaves are placed in socks to combat sweaty feet[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].

Other Uses

The aroma of the plant repels insects and is used in natural insecticidal sprays and as a moth repellent[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].

Propagation

Seed -
Division.
Cuttings normally root easily[
295
Title
PlantZAfrica.com
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.plantzafrica.com
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent site giving detailed descriptions and uses of many S. African plants.
].

Comments

José Waizel 09th December 2014 12:30
The Artemisia genus has anticonvulsive and sedative actions. some common names in Africa for this plant are: Lanyana, lengana, mhlonyane, umhlonyane, wilde-als.

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