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Common mugwort
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Common mugwort
Common mugwort
Common mugwort
Common mugwort
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Common mugwort
Artemisia vulgaris
Also known as: Wild Wormwood, Naughty Man, Sailor's tobacco, Common wormwood, St. John's plant
Common mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) is an herbaceous plant often found in nitrogen-rich soils. The plant's scent is reportedly a mild insect repellant. Common mugwort is used as an offering in Nepalese temples. Tradition holds that it has cleansing properties, so believers also use it to sweep their floors to give them both a spiritual and physical cleaning.
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Every week
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Sunlight
Full sun
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care guide

Care Guide for Common mugwort

Common mugwort should never be over-watered since waterlogged soil causes its roots to rot. This is a drought-tolerant plant that only needs moist soil when young. When it is mature it only requires supplemental watering in severe drought conditions.
Fertilization
Fertilization
See Details
Common mugwort does not require any additional fertilizer. However, it is a good idea to add a natural fertilizer such as compost. Mulching the surrounding soil with compost will add all the nutrients needed. Do this once a year at the start of winter.
Sand, Loam, Chalky, Clay, Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Sunlight
Sunlight
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Full sun, Partial sun
Hardiness Zones
Hardiness Zones
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4 - 10
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Questions About Common mugwort

Watering Watering Watering
Pruning Pruning Pruning
How Much to Water Common mugwort?
When it comes time to water your Common mugwort, you should not be shy about how much water you give. With the first two to three inches of soil dry, this plant will appreciate a long and thorough watering. Supply enough water to soak the soil entirely. The amount of water you add should be enough to cause excess water to flow through the drainage holes at the bottom of your pot. If you don’t see excess water draining from the pot, you have likely underwatered your plant. But do not let the water accumulate inside the soil, which will be very dangerous to the plant as well. Alternatively, a lack of water draining through the pot could indicate poorly draining soils, which is detrimental to the health of this plant and should be avoided. If the plant is outside, 1 inch of rain per week will be sufficient.
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How Often to Water Common mugwort?
If your plant is in a pot. The most precise way to decide whether your Common mugwort needs water is to plunge your finger into the soil. If you notice that the first two to three inches of soil have become dry, it is time to add some water.

If you grow your Common mugwort outdoors in the ground, you can use a similar method to test the soil. Again, when you find that the first few inches of soil have dried out, it is time to add water. During the spring and early fall, this method will often lead you to water this plant about once every week. When extremely hot weather arrives, you may need to increase your watering frequency to about twice or more per week. With that said, mature, well-established the Common mugwort can show an admirable ability to withstand drought.
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How to Water Common mugwort at Different Growth Stages?
The water needs of the Common mugwort can change depending on growth stages as well. For example, when your Common mugwort is in the first few years of its life, or if you have just transplanted it to a new growing location, you will need to give more water than usual. During both of those stages, your Common mugwort will put a lot of energy towards sprouting new roots that will then support future growth. For those roots to perform their best, they need a bit more moisture than they would at a more mature phase. After a few seasons, your Common mugwort will need much less water. Another growth stage in which this plant may need more water is during the bloom period. Flower development can make use of a significant amount of moisture, which is why you might need to give your Common mugwort more water at this time.
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How to Water Common mugwort Through the Seasons?
The Common mugwort will have its highest water needs during the hottest months of the year. During the height of summer, you may need to give this plant water more than once per week, depending on how fast the soil dries out. The opposite is true during the winter. In winter, your plant will enter a dormant phase, in which it will need far less water than usual. In fact, you may not need to water this plant at all during the winter months. However, if you do water during winter, you should not do so more than about once per month. Watering too much at this time will make it more likely that your Common mugwort will contract a disease.
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What Is the Best Way to Water the Common mugwort?
When watering the Common mugwort, you should aim to use filtered water that is at room temperature. Filtered water is better for this plant, as tap water can contain particles that are harmful to its health. The reason that the water should be at room temperature or slightly warmer is that the Common mugwort comes from a warm environment, and cold water can be somewhat of a shock to its system. Also, you should avoid overhead watering for this plant, as it can cause foliage complications. Instead, simply apply your filtered room temperature water to the soil until the soil is entirely soaked. Soaking the soil can be very beneficial for this plant as it moistens the roots and helps them continue to spread through the soil and collect the nutrients they need.
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What Is the Difference between Watering Common mugwort Indoors and Outdoors?
It is most common to grow the Common mugwort indoors for any gardener that does not live in temperate and tropical regions. Those gardeners should consider the fact that soil in a container can dry out a bit faster than ground soil. Also, the presence of drying elements such as air conditioning units can cause your Common mugwort to need water on a more frequent basis as well. if you planted it outside. When that is the case, it’s likely you won’t need to water your Common mugwort very much at all. If you receive rainfall on a regular basis, that may be enough to keep your plant alive. Alternatively, those who grow this plant inside will need to water it more often, as allowing rainwater to soak the soil will not be an option.
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What to Do If Your Water Common mugwort Too Much or Too Little?
Both overwatering and underwatering will be detrimental to the health of your Common mugwort, but overwatering is a far more common issue. When this species receives too much water, its stems and leaves may begin to wilt and turn from green to yellow. Overwatering over a prolonged period may also lead to diseases such as root rot, mold, and mildew, all of which can kill your plant. Underwatering is far less common for the Common mugwort, as this plant has decent drought tolerance. However, underwatering remains a possibility, and when it occurs, you can expect to find that the leaves of your Common mugwort have become brittle and brown.

It is crucial that you notice the signs of overwatering as soon as possible when caring for your Common mugwort. Some of the diseases that arise from overwatering, such as root rot, may not be correctable if you wait too long. If you see early signs of overwatering, you should reduce your watering schedule immediately. You may also want to assess the quality of soil in which your Common mugwort grows. If you find that the soil drains very poorly, you should replace it immediately with a loose, well-draining potting mix. On the other hand, if you find signs that your Common mugwort is receiving too little water, all you need to do is water more regularly until those signs have subsided.
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pests

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Common mugwort based on 10 million real cases
Plant dried up
Plant dried up Plant dried up
Plant dried up
The entire plant may dry out due to dieback or normal seasonal dormancy.
Solutions: The solution for a dried out plant depends on the cause, so determine the cause before selecting a treatment method. Adjust your watering: Stick your finger in the soil near the roots. If it feels bone dry or overly saturated, you need to adjust your watering frequency accordingly. Prune back dead foliage: Snip off any brown stems and leaves on the plant to make space for new growth. This encourages the roots to send up fresh stems. Move to a proper environment. This may involve decreasing or increasing sun exposure, depending on the species. Decrease fertilizer applications. If you have applied too much fertilizer, you can repot plants with fresh potting soil. Wait. If your plant has dried out as daylight is decreasing, it is entering dormancy. Decrease watering and wait until the plant resumes growth.
Underwatering
Underwatering Underwatering
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Leaf rot
Leaf rot Leaf rot
Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Solutions: Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden. In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label. In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Thrips
Thrips Thrips
Thrips
Thrips are 1 - 2 mm bugs with slender black or translucent-yellow bodies. They move quickly and feed on the plant's sap.
Solutions: Thrips can be controlled in several ways. Spray plants with Pyrethrin, which is an organic pesticide derived from marigolds (follow label instructions) or Permethrin, the synthetic version of Pyrethrin. Introduce beneficial insects to the garden that eat thrips, such as minute pirate bugs and green lacewings. Remove heavily infested plants from the area and discard. Address viral diseases that may have been transmitted by the pests. For less serious cases -use a hose to spray the thrips off of the plants.
Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Solutions: There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
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Plant dried up
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Plant dried up
The entire plant may dry out due to dieback or normal seasonal dormancy.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Your plant has dried out and turned brown. It might be starting to wilt, with no noticeable green around the stems and leaves. Touch the leaves, and they may crinkle under your fingers.
Possible causes of a dried out plant include:
  1. Not enough water. A lack of water will lead to dry plant tissue.
  2. Too much water. Watering too much can lead to root rot which makes the plant struggle to take up water. Rotted, mushy roots are a sign of overeating.
  3. Entering dormancy. As perennial plants enter their resting period known as dormancy, their leaves dry out and may fall off. This happens during decreasing day length.
  4. Exposure to herbicides and other toxic substances. If a plant is hit with a large dose herbicide or other toxic chemical, the plant will turn brown.
  5. Too much fertility. An excess of fertilizer can prevent plants from taking up water, leading to drying.
  6. Improper sun exposure. Just like humans, plants can get sunburn by intense, direct light. Plants can also dry out if they don’t receive enough light.
To determine whether the plant is still alive and can be saved, you can:
  1. Bend a stem. If the stem is pliable, the plant is still alive. If the stem breaks, the plant is dead.
  2. Gently scratch the stem with your fingernail for signs of green inside. If your plant is dead, the stem will be brittle and brown throughout.
  3. Cut the stems back a little bit a time for visible green growth. If none of the stems have visible green growth, the plant is dead.
Solutions
Solutions
The solution for a dried out plant depends on the cause, so determine the cause before selecting a treatment method.
  1. Adjust your watering: Stick your finger in the soil near the roots. If it feels bone dry or overly saturated, you need to adjust your watering frequency accordingly.
  2. Prune back dead foliage: Snip off any brown stems and leaves on the plant to make space for new growth. This encourages the roots to send up fresh stems.
  3. Move to a proper environment. This may involve decreasing or increasing sun exposure, depending on the species.
  4. Decrease fertilizer applications. If you have applied too much fertilizer, you can repot plants with fresh potting soil.
  5. Wait. If your plant has dried out as daylight is decreasing, it is entering dormancy. Decrease watering and wait until the plant resumes growth.
Prevention
Prevention
Prevention involves providing your plant with the proper environment.
  1. Provide the proper amount of water. The amount of water depends on a plant’s size, species, and environment. A general rule is to allow soil to dry out between waterings.
  2. Place plants in the proper environment. Provide the proper hours of sun and temperature for your individual plant.
  3. Provide proper fertility. Most plants only need to be fertilized once or twice a year; don’t overapply.
  4. Keep plants free from toxic substances. Keep herbicides and toxic household chemicals away from your plants.
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Underwatering
plant poor
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Leaf rot
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Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Leaf rot is very common among both house plants and garden plants. It affects foliage and occurs mainly when the leaves become wet due to rain or misting by the gardener. The cause is fungal disease and this is facilitated by the fungal spores adhering to wet leaves then penetrating the leaf and expanding rapidly. Damp conditions and poor air circulation will increase chances of infection taking place. Another factor are leaves that are damaged or have been penetrated by sap sucking insects that facilitate plant penetration.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
  1. Spores are able to cling to a damp leaf and penetrate, often through an existing wound.
  2. A small dark brown mark appears which expands rapidly as sporulation starts to take place.
  3. Quite quickly these bull's eye like circles can link together and the whole leaf turns dark and loses texture.
  4. Leaf drop occurs.
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
These symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection invading the plant. Bacteria from many sources in the environment (air, water, soil, diseased plants) enter a plant through wounds, or in some cases the stomata when they are open. Once inside the leaf tissue, the bacteria feed and reproduce quickly, breaking down healthy leaves.
Bacterial infections threaten most plant species, and are more prominent in wet weather that more easily transfers the bacteria from plant to plant, or from soil to plant.
Solutions
Solutions
Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden.
In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Prevention
Prevention
  1. Clean up garden debris at the end of the season, especially if it contains any diseased plant tissue. Diseases can overwinter from season to season and infect new plants.
  2. Avoid overhead watering to prevent transferring pathogens from one plant to another, and to keep foliage dry.
  3. Mulch around the base of plants to prevent soil-borne bacteria from splashing up onto uninfected plants.
  4. Sterilize cutting tools using a 10% bleach solution when gardening and moving from one plant to another.
  5. Do not work in your garden when it is wet.
  6. Rotate crops to prevent the buildup of bacteria in one site due to continuous cropping.
  7. Use a copper or streptomycin-containing bactericide in early spring to prevent infection. Read label directions carefully as they are not suitable for all plants.
  8. Ensure plants are well spaced and thin leaves on densely leaved plants so that air circulation is maximised.
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Thrips
plant poor
Thrips
Thrips are 1 - 2 mm bugs with slender black or translucent-yellow bodies. They move quickly and feed on the plant's sap.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Thrips are tiny, flying, sap-sucking insects that attack the tender parts of plants, causing scarring and weakening of the plant and sometimes, if the infestation is severe enough, plant death. They have undersized double wings with a fringe on them, resembling tiny, misshapen damselflies. Thrips have a taste for many houseplants and crops, making them a serious nuisance.
They appear in early spring after the last frost has occurred. If not controlled in early spring, they will persist for most of the season. They are often attracted to weakened plants, such as those struck by drought/underwatering or malnutrition. Excessive use of nitrogen fertilizer also seems to attract them to a plant. Thrips can spread various viruses between plants, leading to more serious damage.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Thrips are so small that they may not be noticed (1 - 2 mm long), but infested plants present several key signs. Tiny pale spots appear on leaves, which may start to deform, show white or silver discoloration, or become papery in texture.
Flower petals may be damaged as well, and might display color break, which is dark or pale discoloring of petal tissue damaged before the buds had a chance to open. Fruits may show scabby or silvery scarring. Tiny black spots of the insects' excrement may be visible.
As the infestation progresses, infested terminals roll and become discolored, and leaves may drop prematurely. The plant's growth may be stunted. Secondary viral and bacterial infections, which thrips can transmit, may become evident.
The good news? Thrips rarely kill or seriously weaken shrubs and trees. Smaller plants, such as vegetable crops and herbaceous ornamentals, tend to be more severely affected.
Solutions
Solutions
Thrips can be controlled in several ways.
  • Spray plants with Pyrethrin, which is an organic pesticide derived from marigolds (follow label instructions) or Permethrin, the synthetic version of Pyrethrin.
  • Introduce beneficial insects to the garden that eat thrips, such as minute pirate bugs and green lacewings.
  • Remove heavily infested plants from the area and discard.
  • Address viral diseases that may have been transmitted by the pests.
  • For less serious cases -use a hose to spray the thrips off of the plants.
Prevention
Prevention
The best way to protect plants from thrips is to take preventative measures.
  • Avoid buying and transplanting infected plants. Check for signs of thrip damage before buying.
  • Regularly prune off dead branches and leaves.
  • Keep the garden weeded and remove debris such as dead branches and leaves.
  • Avoid unnecessary use of insecticides as they can kill predatory insects that keep thrips in check.
  • Plant a diverse variety of plants in the garden to provide habitat for predatory insects.
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Nutrient deficiencies
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Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Nutrient deficiencies can be seen in many different ways on plants. Basically, the lack of nutrients will inhibit plant growth, produce weak stems and leaves, and leave plants open to infection from pests and diseases. Plants use the nutrients from the soil to help them with photosynthesis. This, in turn, produces healthy plant growth. Plants that lack adequate amounts of nutrients will look lackluster and unhealthy. Eventually, if this is not addressed, it will cause the plants to die. The most important nutrients that plants need are nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Additionally, plants require small amounts of micronutrients such as iron, boron, manganese, zinc, copper, and molybdenum.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
A common sign that plants are experiencing nutrient deficiencies is the yellowing of leaves. This may be an overall yellowing or leaves that are yellow but still have green veins. These leaves will eventually brown off and die.
Another sign is the loss of plant vigor. The plants may not be growing as well as they should or their growth may be stunted.
Below are some common symptoms that appear when plants are lacking in nutrients.
Nitrogen (N): Inner, older leaves yellow first. If the deficiency is severe, yellowing progresses outward to newer growth.
Potassium (K): Leaf edges may turn brown and crinkly, with a yellowing layer forming just inside of the edge. Older leaves tend to be impacted first.
Phosphorus (P): Lack of vigorous growth. Plants will appear stunted.
Zinc (Zn): Yellowing tends to occur first at the base of the leaf.
Copper (Cu): Newer leaves begin to yellow first, with older leaves yellowing only if the deficiency becomes severe.
Boron (B): Newer leaves are impacted first. Foliage may also become particularly brittle in cases of boron deficiency.
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
There are several factors that can lead to nutrient deficiencies, a situation where plants are not receiving the nutrients that they need. This could be because they are planted in nutrient-deficient soils, or that the soil's pH is too high or low. Incorrect soil pH can lock up certain nutrients, thus making them unavailable to plants. Lack of soil moisture can also be a problem, because plants need water to be able to absorb the nutrients from the soil.
Solutions
Solutions
There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils.
  1. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies.
  2. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy.
  3. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly.
  4. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Prevention
Prevention
There are several easy ways to prevent nutrient deficiencies in plants.
  1. Regular fertilizing. Regular addition of fertilizer to the soil is one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent deficiencies.
  2. Proper watering. Both over and under watering can adversely impact a plant's roots, which in turn makes it harder for them to properly take up nutrients.
  3. Testing the soil's pH. A soil's acidity or alkalinity will impact the degree to which certain nutrients are available to be taken up by plants. Knowing the soil's pH means it can be amended to suit the needs of the individual plants.
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weed

Weed Control

Weeds
Despite its desirable aromatic properties, common mugwort can be a very weedy plant. It is undesirable in agricultural fields, along railways and roadsides. It is also listed as a common or troublesome agricultural weed in the US states of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. Common mugwort is difficult to control because it spreads efficiently underground via rhizomes, plus it is a generally hardy plant. These traits make it capable of taking over large areas if not controlled. Another reason it is considered a weed is that it causes dermatological toxicity in some susceptible individuals. In warmer regions, it can also spread via seeds. Controlling common mugwort manually can be a time-consuming task, but it is still doable. Removing the plants constantly by hand or machine will eventually exhaust the entire plant, including the underground stems.
How to Control it
Common mugwort is very difficult to manage and is best controlled either physically or by using herbicides. Physical control of common mugwort includes regular mowing, or manually uprooting the plants. This will drain the roots of resources, and they will eventually stop sprouting and reproducing. Remove as much roots as possible for best results. Common mugwort can also be controlled with herbicide application. Consult an agricultural expert to find the best active substance and application method for your geographic region. Spray on a windless day to avoid drift.
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distribution

Distribution Map

Habitat

Hedgebanks, waysides, uncultivated and waste land
distribution map
Native
Cultivated
Invasive
Potentially invasive
Exotic
No species reported
habit
plant_info

More Info

Plant Type
Plant Type
Herb
Flower Color
Flower Color
Yellow
Green
Brown
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Summer, Fall
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green

Name story

Common mugwort
It is the most common species among its genus. The name, mugwort is derived from midge and wort with the combined meaning of mosquito-repelling grass. As it is a good mosquito repellent, it is called common mugwort.
Sailor's tobacco
When it comes to sailors, the time they set sail on the sea can last up to months and the tobacco that they brought on always run out before they return. Hence, it is the best substitute for tobacco when they run out of it. So, it is called sailor's tobacco.

Symbolism

Strength, visions, Protection, healing

Usages

Garden Use
The gentle fragrance of common mugwort makes it popular in herb and cottage gardens. This graceful plant works well as a border plant or an accent for wildflowers. It produces decorative flowers during the summer and fall, which also draws in butterflies and bees. There are several cultivars, so you can find a variety that will serve your garden needs.
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Century plant
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About
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Common mugwort
Common mugwort
Common mugwort
Common mugwort
Common mugwort
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Common mugwort
Artemisia vulgaris
Also known as: Wild Wormwood, Naughty Man, Sailor's tobacco, Common wormwood, St. John's plant
Water
Every week
Water
Sunlight
Full sun
Sunlight
Weeds
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pests

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Common mugwort based on 10 million real cases
Plant dried up
Plant dried up  Plant dried up  Plant dried up
The entire plant may dry out due to dieback or normal seasonal dormancy.
Solutions: The solution for a dried out plant depends on the cause, so determine the cause before selecting a treatment method. Adjust your watering: Stick your finger in the soil near the roots. If it feels bone dry or overly saturated, you need to adjust your watering frequency accordingly. Prune back dead foliage: Snip off any brown stems and leaves on the plant to make space for new growth. This encourages the roots to send up fresh stems. Move to a proper environment. This may involve decreasing or increasing sun exposure, depending on the species. Decrease fertilizer applications. If you have applied too much fertilizer, you can repot plants with fresh potting soil. Wait. If your plant has dried out as daylight is decreasing, it is entering dormancy. Decrease watering and wait until the plant resumes growth.
Learn More more
Underwatering
Underwatering  Underwatering  Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Learn More more
Leaf rot
Leaf rot  Leaf rot  Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Solutions: Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden. In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label. In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Learn More more
Thrips
Thrips  Thrips  Thrips
Thrips are 1 - 2 mm bugs with slender black or translucent-yellow bodies. They move quickly and feed on the plant's sap.
Solutions: Thrips can be controlled in several ways. Spray plants with Pyrethrin, which is an organic pesticide derived from marigolds (follow label instructions) or Permethrin, the synthetic version of Pyrethrin. Introduce beneficial insects to the garden that eat thrips, such as minute pirate bugs and green lacewings. Remove heavily infested plants from the area and discard. Address viral diseases that may have been transmitted by the pests. For less serious cases -use a hose to spray the thrips off of the plants.
Learn More more
Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies  Nutrient deficiencies  Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Solutions: There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
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Plant dried up
plant poor
Plant dried up
The entire plant may dry out due to dieback or normal seasonal dormancy.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Your plant has dried out and turned brown. It might be starting to wilt, with no noticeable green around the stems and leaves. Touch the leaves, and they may crinkle under your fingers.
Possible causes of a dried out plant include:
  1. Not enough water. A lack of water will lead to dry plant tissue.
  2. Too much water. Watering too much can lead to root rot which makes the plant struggle to take up water. Rotted, mushy roots are a sign of overeating.
  3. Entering dormancy. As perennial plants enter their resting period known as dormancy, their leaves dry out and may fall off. This happens during decreasing day length.
  4. Exposure to herbicides and other toxic substances. If a plant is hit with a large dose herbicide or other toxic chemical, the plant will turn brown.
  5. Too much fertility. An excess of fertilizer can prevent plants from taking up water, leading to drying.
  6. Improper sun exposure. Just like humans, plants can get sunburn by intense, direct light. Plants can also dry out if they don’t receive enough light.
To determine whether the plant is still alive and can be saved, you can:
  1. Bend a stem. If the stem is pliable, the plant is still alive. If the stem breaks, the plant is dead.
  2. Gently scratch the stem with your fingernail for signs of green inside. If your plant is dead, the stem will be brittle and brown throughout.
  3. Cut the stems back a little bit a time for visible green growth. If none of the stems have visible green growth, the plant is dead.
Solutions
Solutions
The solution for a dried out plant depends on the cause, so determine the cause before selecting a treatment method.
  1. Adjust your watering: Stick your finger in the soil near the roots. If it feels bone dry or overly saturated, you need to adjust your watering frequency accordingly.
  2. Prune back dead foliage: Snip off any brown stems and leaves on the plant to make space for new growth. This encourages the roots to send up fresh stems.
  3. Move to a proper environment. This may involve decreasing or increasing sun exposure, depending on the species.
  4. Decrease fertilizer applications. If you have applied too much fertilizer, you can repot plants with fresh potting soil.
  5. Wait. If your plant has dried out as daylight is decreasing, it is entering dormancy. Decrease watering and wait until the plant resumes growth.
Prevention
Prevention
Prevention involves providing your plant with the proper environment.
  1. Provide the proper amount of water. The amount of water depends on a plant’s size, species, and environment. A general rule is to allow soil to dry out between waterings.
  2. Place plants in the proper environment. Provide the proper hours of sun and temperature for your individual plant.
  3. Provide proper fertility. Most plants only need to be fertilized once or twice a year; don’t overapply.
  4. Keep plants free from toxic substances. Keep herbicides and toxic household chemicals away from your plants.
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Underwatering
plant poor
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Leaf rot
plant poor
Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Leaf rot is very common among both house plants and garden plants. It affects foliage and occurs mainly when the leaves become wet due to rain or misting by the gardener. The cause is fungal disease and this is facilitated by the fungal spores adhering to wet leaves then penetrating the leaf and expanding rapidly. Damp conditions and poor air circulation will increase chances of infection taking place. Another factor are leaves that are damaged or have been penetrated by sap sucking insects that facilitate plant penetration.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
  1. Spores are able to cling to a damp leaf and penetrate, often through an existing wound.
  2. A small dark brown mark appears which expands rapidly as sporulation starts to take place.
  3. Quite quickly these bull's eye like circles can link together and the whole leaf turns dark and loses texture.
  4. Leaf drop occurs.
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
These symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection invading the plant. Bacteria from many sources in the environment (air, water, soil, diseased plants) enter a plant through wounds, or in some cases the stomata when they are open. Once inside the leaf tissue, the bacteria feed and reproduce quickly, breaking down healthy leaves.
Bacterial infections threaten most plant species, and are more prominent in wet weather that more easily transfers the bacteria from plant to plant, or from soil to plant.
Solutions
Solutions
Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden.
In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Prevention
Prevention
  1. Clean up garden debris at the end of the season, especially if it contains any diseased plant tissue. Diseases can overwinter from season to season and infect new plants.
  2. Avoid overhead watering to prevent transferring pathogens from one plant to another, and to keep foliage dry.
  3. Mulch around the base of plants to prevent soil-borne bacteria from splashing up onto uninfected plants.
  4. Sterilize cutting tools using a 10% bleach solution when gardening and moving from one plant to another.
  5. Do not work in your garden when it is wet.
  6. Rotate crops to prevent the buildup of bacteria in one site due to continuous cropping.
  7. Use a copper or streptomycin-containing bactericide in early spring to prevent infection. Read label directions carefully as they are not suitable for all plants.
  8. Ensure plants are well spaced and thin leaves on densely leaved plants so that air circulation is maximised.
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Thrips
plant poor
Thrips
Thrips are 1 - 2 mm bugs with slender black or translucent-yellow bodies. They move quickly and feed on the plant's sap.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Thrips are tiny, flying, sap-sucking insects that attack the tender parts of plants, causing scarring and weakening of the plant and sometimes, if the infestation is severe enough, plant death. They have undersized double wings with a fringe on them, resembling tiny, misshapen damselflies. Thrips have a taste for many houseplants and crops, making them a serious nuisance.
They appear in early spring after the last frost has occurred. If not controlled in early spring, they will persist for most of the season. They are often attracted to weakened plants, such as those struck by drought/underwatering or malnutrition. Excessive use of nitrogen fertilizer also seems to attract them to a plant. Thrips can spread various viruses between plants, leading to more serious damage.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Thrips are so small that they may not be noticed (1 - 2 mm long), but infested plants present several key signs. Tiny pale spots appear on leaves, which may start to deform, show white or silver discoloration, or become papery in texture.
Flower petals may be damaged as well, and might display color break, which is dark or pale discoloring of petal tissue damaged before the buds had a chance to open. Fruits may show scabby or silvery scarring. Tiny black spots of the insects' excrement may be visible.
As the infestation progresses, infested terminals roll and become discolored, and leaves may drop prematurely. The plant's growth may be stunted. Secondary viral and bacterial infections, which thrips can transmit, may become evident.
The good news? Thrips rarely kill or seriously weaken shrubs and trees. Smaller plants, such as vegetable crops and herbaceous ornamentals, tend to be more severely affected.
Solutions
Solutions
Thrips can be controlled in several ways.
  • Spray plants with Pyrethrin, which is an organic pesticide derived from marigolds (follow label instructions) or Permethrin, the synthetic version of Pyrethrin.
  • Introduce beneficial insects to the garden that eat thrips, such as minute pirate bugs and green lacewings.
  • Remove heavily infested plants from the area and discard.
  • Address viral diseases that may have been transmitted by the pests.
  • For less serious cases -use a hose to spray the thrips off of the plants.
Prevention
Prevention
The best way to protect plants from thrips is to take preventative measures.
  • Avoid buying and transplanting infected plants. Check for signs of thrip damage before buying.
  • Regularly prune off dead branches and leaves.
  • Keep the garden weeded and remove debris such as dead branches and leaves.
  • Avoid unnecessary use of insecticides as they can kill predatory insects that keep thrips in check.
  • Plant a diverse variety of plants in the garden to provide habitat for predatory insects.
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Nutrient deficiencies
plant poor
Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Nutrient deficiencies can be seen in many different ways on plants. Basically, the lack of nutrients will inhibit plant growth, produce weak stems and leaves, and leave plants open to infection from pests and diseases. Plants use the nutrients from the soil to help them with photosynthesis. This, in turn, produces healthy plant growth. Plants that lack adequate amounts of nutrients will look lackluster and unhealthy. Eventually, if this is not addressed, it will cause the plants to die. The most important nutrients that plants need are nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Additionally, plants require small amounts of micronutrients such as iron, boron, manganese, zinc, copper, and molybdenum.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
A common sign that plants are experiencing nutrient deficiencies is the yellowing of leaves. This may be an overall yellowing or leaves that are yellow but still have green veins. These leaves will eventually brown off and die.
Another sign is the loss of plant vigor. The plants may not be growing as well as they should or their growth may be stunted.
Below are some common symptoms that appear when plants are lacking in nutrients.
Nitrogen (N): Inner, older leaves yellow first. If the deficiency is severe, yellowing progresses outward to newer growth.
Potassium (K): Leaf edges may turn brown and crinkly, with a yellowing layer forming just inside of the edge. Older leaves tend to be impacted first.
Phosphorus (P): Lack of vigorous growth. Plants will appear stunted.
Zinc (Zn): Yellowing tends to occur first at the base of the leaf.
Copper (Cu): Newer leaves begin to yellow first, with older leaves yellowing only if the deficiency becomes severe.
Boron (B): Newer leaves are impacted first. Foliage may also become particularly brittle in cases of boron deficiency.
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
There are several factors that can lead to nutrient deficiencies, a situation where plants are not receiving the nutrients that they need. This could be because they are planted in nutrient-deficient soils, or that the soil's pH is too high or low. Incorrect soil pH can lock up certain nutrients, thus making them unavailable to plants. Lack of soil moisture can also be a problem, because plants need water to be able to absorb the nutrients from the soil.
Solutions
Solutions
There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils.
  1. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies.
  2. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy.
  3. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly.
  4. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Prevention
Prevention
There are several easy ways to prevent nutrient deficiencies in plants.
  1. Regular fertilizing. Regular addition of fertilizer to the soil is one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent deficiencies.
  2. Proper watering. Both over and under watering can adversely impact a plant's roots, which in turn makes it harder for them to properly take up nutrients.
  3. Testing the soil's pH. A soil's acidity or alkalinity will impact the degree to which certain nutrients are available to be taken up by plants. Knowing the soil's pH means it can be amended to suit the needs of the individual plants.
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weed

Weed Control

weed
Weeds
Despite its desirable aromatic properties, common mugwort can be a very weedy plant. It is undesirable in agricultural fields, along railways and roadsides. It is also listed as a common or troublesome agricultural weed in the US states of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. Common mugwort is difficult to control because it spreads efficiently underground via rhizomes, plus it is a generally hardy plant. These traits make it capable of taking over large areas if not controlled. Another reason it is considered a weed is that it causes dermatological toxicity in some susceptible individuals. In warmer regions, it can also spread via seeds. Controlling common mugwort manually can be a time-consuming task, but it is still doable. Removing the plants constantly by hand or machine will eventually exhaust the entire plant, including the underground stems.
How to Control it
Common mugwort is very difficult to manage and is best controlled either physically or by using herbicides. Physical control of common mugwort includes regular mowing, or manually uprooting the plants. This will drain the roots of resources, and they will eventually stop sprouting and reproducing. Remove as much roots as possible for best results. Common mugwort can also be controlled with herbicide application. Consult an agricultural expert to find the best active substance and application method for your geographic region. Spray on a windless day to avoid drift.
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distribution

Distribution Map

Habitat

Hedgebanks, waysides, uncultivated and waste land

Map

distribution map
Native
Cultivated
Invasive
Potentially invasive
Exotic
No species reported
plant_info

More Info

Plant Type
Plant Type
Herb
Flower Color
Flower Color
Yellow
Green
Brown
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Summer, Fall
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green

Name story

Common mugwort
It is the most common species among its genus. The name, mugwort is derived from midge and wort with the combined meaning of mosquito-repelling grass. As it is a good mosquito repellent, it is called common mugwort.
Sailor's tobacco
When it comes to sailors, the time they set sail on the sea can last up to months and the tobacco that they brought on always run out before they return. Hence, it is the best substitute for tobacco when they run out of it. So, it is called sailor's tobacco.

Symbolism

Strength, visions, Protection, healing

Usages

Garden Use
The gentle fragrance of common mugwort makes it popular in herb and cottage gardens. This graceful plant works well as a border plant or an accent for wildflowers. It produces decorative flowers during the summer and fall, which also draws in butterflies and bees. There are several cultivars, so you can find a variety that will serve your garden needs.
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