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Plant type

Perennial herb


8 ft Tall
4 ft Wide



Growth rate



Winter Deciduous




Cream, White, Yellow

Flowering season

Spring, Summer, Fall

Common uses

Deer resistant

Mugwort (Artemisia douglasiana) is an aromatic shrub in the Asteraceae (Sunflower) family, although plants in this genus don't look like that would be the case. Found in virtually every county of California, this plant has been used as a ceremonial plant in many Native American cultures, for use in treating a minor injury, or as a dream potentiator.

The plant is native to the western United States and into Baja California, where it is often found in moist areas such as drainages. It's often riparian in the drier parts of its range. The flowers are small and inconspicuous, often not producing viable seed. It spreads by rhizomes, especially in damp areas.

This plant is not often seen in residential gardens but is sometimes grown for medicinal purposes. It is also useful in restoration projects and for erosion control.


Full Sun, Partial Shade, Deep Shade


Low, Moderate

Summer irrigation

Max 1x / month once established

Ease of care


Cold tolerance

Tolerates cold to 0° F

Soil drainage


Soil description

Tolerant of a variety of soils as long as adequate moisture is available.
Soil PH: 5.0 - 8.0


May be cut back to ground during dormancy


Usually from rhizome cuttings

Sunset Zones

1, 2, 3, 4*, 5*, 6*, 7*, 8*, 9*, 10, 14*, 15*, 16*, 17*, 18*, 19*, 20*, 21*, 22*, 23*, 24*

Use with other plants of moist areas, such as Indigo Bush (Amorpha fruticosa), Mule Fat (Baccharis salicifolia), dogwood (Cornus spp.), rush (Juncus spp.), sedge (Carex spp.), currant/gooseberry (Ribes spp.), wild rose (Rosa spp.), willow (Salix spp.), and wild grape (Vitis spp.).

Western False Indigo

Amorpha fruticosa


Baccharis salicifolia


Butterflies and moths supported

3 confirmed and 28 likely

Confirmed Likely

Orange Tortrix Moth

Argyrotaenia franciscana

Sagebush Defoliator

Aroga websteri

Aseptis characta

Aseptis susquesa

Site type

Open, often in drainages and other wet areas, but also in woodlands, grassland and chaparral

Plant communities

Chaparral, Foothill Woodland, Valley Grassland, Yellow Pine Forest, Wetland-Riparian,