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Silver Wormwood
White Sagebrush

Artemisia ludoviciana

Photo © by Michael Plagens

Photographed near Bumblebee, Yavapai Co., Arizona. August 2008.

SUB-SHRUB: Shrubby near base, but otherwise herbaceous. In the Sonoran Desert rarely more than a meter tall. Usually a number of upright stems.

LEAVES: Leaves are narrow/elyptic, sometimes lobed, and covered with silvery hairs. The herbaceous stems are also covered giving the whole plant a silvery, silky appearance.

RANGE: Found mostly at mid to upper elevations of the Sonoran Desert on rocky slopes and in canyons. Ranges across much of North America with considerable variation in leaf size, overall structure and degree of hirsuteness. Many cultivars are available in gardens and nurseries.

FLOWERS: Small heads, barely larger than a pencil eraser, of disc flowers. Yellow florets barely exposed as the surrounding bracts do not open widely and are covered with long, silky trichomes.

FRUIT: Small achene seeds without a pappus mostly ten or fewer per head.


Asteraceae -- Sunflower Family

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, 1999-2008