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Growing Wormwood

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I recently ordered another batch of seeds for this growing season (I tried last year but ended up putting my mini greenhouse absinthe garden, including a bunch of Wormwood starts, out in the sun too long and frying them... :twitchsmile: ) and I'm going to try to just grow a little AA this season.

 

Am I the only one weird enough to do this? If not, does anyone have any tips?

 

Aaron

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The weather and time is perfect, so go for it, however you should have started earlier, the harvest season is already on its way :cheers: What tips are you looking specifically for?

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Am I the only one weird enough to do this?
Definitely.

None of us here would intentionally grow wormwood, that's whack.

What if one of my neighbor's kids was playing in their back yard, and they accidentally fell over the huge fence between our yards, into my patch of wormwood where, in their struggles to get free, they accidentally ate all the wormwood, and had hallucinations and caught epilepsy?

 

Then where would I be, smart guy?

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My sister volunteered as a cashier at an herb sale a month ago, and I purchased two small wormwood plants from her. I've since transplanted them to larger pots, where they are growing nicely. Haven't a clue as to what I'll do with them other than watch them grow all summer.

 

Sorry I couldn't be more help.

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Most wormwood sold at garden centers is actually Powis Castle and not Artemisia Absinthium. You're not going to see any flowers on it if it is. But, it looks pretty and smells nice when you rub the leaves.

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It's a WEED!

 

It's all over the damn place. I hit a big bush with my lawnmower and the place is filled with a lovely aroma but suddenly, I have to go get an absinthe. I'll never get this damn lawn mowed. Every 10 feet or so, another absinthe. Forget drunk posting. I'm drunk mowing.

 

And you're trying to grow it?!!!

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Head out to Vail, CO. I'm sure they'll let you take as much as you want. Of course, you have to take their word for it that they've correctly identified the stuff.

 

Seeds can be found online and on eBay, but again, trustworthy source? Could be mugwort.

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I ordered mine as live plants from the good folks at Mountain Valley Growers. Unfortunately, last year I planted one of the two A. absinthium plants in a shady spot and it was outgrown by the black-eyed-susans... The other is in a nice, hot, sunny spot and looks great this year. Not knowing the best way to prune it, I took a chance and nearly cut it back to the ground late last fall. It came back gangbusters this year (I'll try to take a photo tomorrow and upload it).

 

Oh, the Powis Castle is really beautiful, seems to accommodate even brown thumbs, and as Hissy attested, smells great when stroked. I have mine in a large container on the deck and it is likewise doing great.

 

I would appreciate guidance on pruning/harvesting that will assure it makes it back again next year.

 

Some areas do consider A. a. to be a noxious weed, so you won't find them in most garden centers.

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I have a packet of seeds that I got last year that I would be willing to part with. PM me with an address and I'll get them in the mail. I've been afraid to plant them since they appear to be invasive in this area. I know they cannot be imported to SD.

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I too have been thinking of planting a little wormwood in my new yard, but I wasn't aware that ii could become a problem plant. Noxious weed, huh? I just found out what those were the other day while trying to identify a huge spear thistle that has invaded my apartment grounds. I consider them to be the sadists of the plant world.

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I was surprised to see both the A. a. and Powis Castle infested with aphids a couple of weeks ago. I didn't think aphids would attack wormwood. Anyway, I didn't want to spray any sort of serious insecticide, and didn't have a handy source for ladybugs, so opted for the milder insecticidal soap. Worked like a charm and hopefully no residue after a few rains or sprinkler runs. Recommendations or alternatives to the strategy I used?

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I would appreciate guidance on pruning/harvesting that will assure it makes it back again next year.

Although many weeds plants actually benefit in terms of potency from neglect, abuse and various forms of folding/bending/spindling-type-mutilations, I do not recommend T73's manner of plant care. Sounds like it could be detrimental. To the caretaker. :pirate:

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As for noxious weeds, I battled spurge at our old home. A truly despicable plant. Spreads fast, crowds out the grass, and worst of all, is a skin irritant (burns, itches when you break the stems and leaves--releasing a milky fluid). I had to basically kill the entire lawn (twice!) before I got a handle on it and could replant with fescue.

 

As for the wormwood, mine did flower last year (a little anyway), but I see no evidence of new plants derived from seeds. Maybe I cut it back before the seeds could disperse?

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As soon as the house itself is done the garden will be designed and worked on.. something I'm really looking forward to! Hopefully all herbs will do well

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As for noxious weeds, I battled spurge at our old home. A truly despicable plant. Spreads fast, crowds out the grass, and worst of all, is a skin irritant (burns, itches when you break the stems and leaves--releasing a milky fluid).

 

 

I hate spurge. It's stinging nettle with a southern drawl, in my opinion. As kids growing up in Florida we called it "Sunday itch" or "Seven day itch," because of how long the itch lasted.

 

So Powis Castle isn't real absinthe, eh? Damn, guess I'll have to buy some seeds of the real stuff and see what pops up.

 

Oh well. I can console myself with Mojitos made with the mint plants I bought at the same time. :cheers:

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I would appreciate guidance on pruning/harvesting that will assure it makes it back again next year.

Although many weeds plants actually benefit in terms of potency from neglect, abuse and various forms of folding/bending/spindling-type-mutilations, I do not recommend T73's manner of plant care. Sounds like it could be detrimental. To the caretaker. :pirate:

Actually, I have a little Tribute Garden including Wormwood from a reputable biologist. It wasn't until after the Wormwood started growing, I realized I had it all over the property. And thistle, knapweed, and a wealth of other noxious weeds. At least I have a fondness for the wormwood which does seem to thrive with a little abuse. Masochistic little plant, eh?

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Am I the only one weird enough to do this?

Definitely.

None of us here would intentionally grow wormwood, that's whack.

What if one of my neighbor's kids was playing in their back yard, and they accidentally fell over the huge fence between our yards, into my patch of wormwood where, in their struggles to get free, they accidentally ate all the wormwood, and had hallucinations and caught epilepsy?

 

Then where would I be, smart guy?

Hey, jerkwad™ you know what I meant, LOLz.

Most wormwood sold at garden centers is actually Powis Castle and not Artemisia Absinthium. You're not going to see any flowers on it if it is. But, it looks pretty and smells nice when you rub the leaves.

Yes, I found out that same thing last year. I had already fried my little starts so on the odd occasion I found a new nursery I'd check for Wormwood and it would NEVER be AA, always PC, AP, etc.

I was wondering about the self-same thing... do you have a seed resource?

I do, but I'd have to get it from my wife as I'm not sure what it is. Look on the internets, you'll find one, I'm sure.

Head out to Vail, CO. I'm sure they'll let you take as much as you want. Of course, you have to take their word for it that they've correctly identified the stuff.

 

Seeds can be found online and on eBay, but again, trustworthy source? Could be mugwort.

Right! That'd be too funny. "Group of absintheurs makes pilgrimage to Vail to take home Wormwood plants."

 

And yes, some online vendors name anything that looks remotely like Wormwood, Wormwood.

 

Ironically enough, TONS of it grows around this area of Jersey, problem is, I can tell it's *a species* of Artemisia, I just can't tell which one.

 

Aaron

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I have a packet of seeds that I got last year that I would be willing to part with. PM me with an address and I'll get them in the mail.

 

The seeds have been claimed. I hope they are the correct variety.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

WormwoodHB73-100

85 days. Artemisia absinthium. Perennial. Foliage is silvery gray and aromatic. Plant used to repel moths. Oil is used to treat sore muscles. A variety from from Europe. Plant Height: 12" tall. pk/100

 

Planting Instructions: Plant seeds ¼" deep.

 

Soil Facts: Requires a well prepared soil. Use general purpose fertilizer when preparing soil.

 

Germination: 12-18 days at 70°F

 

Reimer Seeds

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Shit, that might be AA around here too! I'll have to go take another look.

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While you're at it, take a smell, too. You've sniffed, whiff and huffed that aroma hundreds of times.

And take a really good botany, horticultural book, too.

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Taste it. If you don't die, but you wish you had, it's absinthium. Bring water.

I was surprised to see both the A. a. and Powis Castle infested with aphids a couple of weeks ago. I didn't think aphids would attack wormwood.
Thay love it! I just hose them down in the late evening. That way they can't dry out so well until morning and die off. This won't usually completely get rid of them, but it keeps them under control.
So Powis Castle isn't real absinthe, eh?
Nope. It's believed to be a hybrid between A. arborescens and A. absinthium, but this is uncertain. It's only been around since 1972 when it was introduced/discovered by/given to Jimmy Hancock, the (then) new head Gardener at Powis Castle in Wales (in Montgomeryshire, where my Welsh roots are).
WormwoodHB73-100

85 days. Artemisia absinthium. Perennial. Foliage is silvery gray and aromatic. Plant used to repel moths. Oil is used to treat sore muscles. A variety from from Europe. Plant Height: 12"

Heck, my pontica gets over 24". Absinthium can get up to 8 feet or more.
Where I live it grows wild.

 

Everywhere!

 

For miles and miles. Wormwood as far as the eye can see!

Get harvesting! (just before the flowers open up completely and get all pollen-y.

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While I've got the camera out:

 

If you compare the foliage of these two shots of Powis Castle to the leaves in Deluge's post, you can see how similar they are in structure, but the PC leaves are much smaller and the plant has an overall soft and bushy look to it.

 

PC1.jpg

 

PC2.jpg

 

My Aa getting ready to bloom:

 

AA.jpg

 

Hyssop, likewise:

 

hyssop.jpg

 

Melissa:

 

LB.jpg

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I took a few pictures of my A.a. and Powis Castle:

 

post-97-1179545611_thumb.jpg

 

Here is a close-up of the A.a.

 

post-97-1179545850_thumb.jpg

 

Here is the Powis Castle:

 

post-97-1179545890_thumb.jpg

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Where I live it grows wild.

For miles and miles. Wormwood as far as the eye can see!

 

Where is this?

I haven't seen any here. Of course, I haven't looked for it . I do remember mowing and smelling a familiar scent, but the plans were gone by the time I smelled them.

I guess I will have to take a look around.

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Sheesh. Here I thought WS was a respectable society. Now I find you're growing your own A.a. to make your own steepsinthe. Pffft.

 

 

btw, when wildcrafting, always

 

1. Ask permission of the landowner, if possible. On state and Federal land, permits are available for very little money.

2. Ask the plants for permission.

3. Never take plants from the top of a hill. They are the grandmothers of all the plants on the hillside.

4. Never take more than 1/3 of any stand of plants, and be aware of signs that someone else has harvested before you.

 

If everyone practices sustainable wildcrafting, all will benefit. Don't be greedy.

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Thanks for the tips, DP. I am just now getting into learning about plants and gardening. I need all of the advice I can get!

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