Artemisia spp.



Wormwood; Mugwort. The wormwood herbs are famous for their insect repelling properties and other health benefits. A.absinthum and A.pontica are used in making the famed Absinthe liqueur. Mugwort is used to stuff dream pillows, and the chinese forms are used as moxa herbs in `hot cupping`.
Their silvery foliage makes them popular garden ornamentals.

View More Information
Displaying 1 to 10 (of 15 products) Result Pages: 1  2   [Next>>]   
 
Displaying 1 to 10 (of 15 products) Result Pages: 1  2   [Next>>]   

Artemisia spp.

Important legal information for Australian customers

The importation of Artemisia species oils is prohibited under the Customs Act 1901 Schedule 8, Item 12A. The oil sometimes offered by Shaman Australis Botanicals is manufactured in Australia from australian grown, organic wormwood.


Botanical information

Artemisia absinthum is a perennial plant, it grows to a height of 1.5m with a spread of 1.5m. The rootstock is quite woody; the stems are numerous, branched and woody based; the leaves are silvery white, alternate, and bi- or tripinnate, with winged petioles; the flowers are yellowish-green, small and almost globular, occurring in leafy panicles in summer.

A native of Europe and Siberia, it is adaptable to most soils and conditions, but is drought and frost tender. Propagation is by cuttings or seed.

Artemisia verlortiorum is a perennial plant, it grows to a height of 3m with a spread of 5m. The stems are tall and fibrous, branched and woody based; the leaves are green and covered with silvery hairs, alternate, and bipinnate; the flowers are yellowish-green, small and almost globular, occurring in leafy panicles in summer.

A native of China, it is adaptable to most soils and conditions, but is drought and frost tender.

Propagation is by cuttings.


Traditional uses

Artemisia absinthum (Wormwood) was thought to be a love charm centuries ago and was used by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans both medicinally and in religious rites. The oil acts as a local anaesthetic for rheumatism, neuralgia and arthritis. The indian tribes of North America prepared parts of this plant to treat sore throats and bronchitis. Wormwood is the main active ingredient of the spirit liqueur Absinthe and attained notoriety from its excessive use and abuse. Absinthe was the drug of inspiration for painters like Vincent Van Gogh, Edouard Manet, Pablo Picasso, and Paul Gauguin, and the authors Ernest Hemingway, Jack London and Oscar Wilde amongst others. Todays liqueur Pernod is a relic of the Absinthe era, but does not contain any wormwood anymore. Absinthe was made by steeping wormwood and other herbs in brandy and then distilling the first half of the total volume. Alcohol distills over first, followed by a small amount of water which carries the essential oils across. This leaves behind the bitter principles of the herbs. The alcohol content of Absinthe is usually about 70%. Absinthe is illegal in many countries, but is widely available on the black market in Switzerland and Hungary.

Artemisia arborescens and Artemisia pontiaca have similar uses to Artemisia absinthum.

Artemisia verlotiorum (Chinese Wormwood) is an excellent smoking herb with a mild flavour. Synergistic effects with many other herbs have been reported. It is a favoured aromatic herb for stuffing pillows to ensure of a deep and restful sleep. Its pleasant essential oil odour lasts for many months.


Pharmacology

Artemisia absinthum is rich in thujone. The essential oil of absinthe can consist of up to 65% total thujone, of which the majority is the psychoactive alpha-thujone. Thujone was until recently thought to bind to the same receptor site as THC (Cannabis), resulting in similar psychoactive and physiological effects. This has now been shown not to be the case. Alpha-thujone is regarded as toxic. It induces a feeling of weightlessness and euphoria in small doses, but results in a stupor in larger quantities. Excessive consumption of the liqueur Absinthe is said to cause braindamage, but much of this may be attributed to other additives used last century. To achieve the exquisite colour of true Absinthe many manufacturers resorted to adding toxic metal-salts to their bottled product, many of which would have caused the damage which has been documented.

Back To Top