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Wild Tarragon
Artemisia dracunculus
  
About Wild Tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus) 12 Nurseries Carry This Plant Tarragon or Dragon's-wort (Artemisia dracunculus) is a perennial herb in the family Asteraceae. Plants in this genus are frequently called Wormwood, but this species is usually known as Tarragon. A European cultivar of this species is used as a popular culinary spice. The species name "dracunculus" leads to the common name "dragon herb." It is native to a wide area of the Northern Hemisphere from easternmost Europe across central and eastern Asia to India, western North America, and south to northern Mexico. The North American populations may, however, be naturalized from early human introduction. In California it is found primarily in the southern half of the state, in the coastal mountains and Sierras. Tarragon grows to 120-150 centimeter tall, with slender branched stems. The leaves are lance-shaped, 2-8 centimeter long and 2-10 millimeter broad, glossy green, with an entire margin. The flowers are produced in small capitulae 2-4 millimeter diameter, each capitulum containing up to 40 yellow or greenish-yellow florets. Some sources refer to this plant as an unattractive weed. It is cultivated primarily for culinary purposes but also has some wildlife value.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Plant Type
Perennial herb

Size
Size
3.9 - 5 ft tall
5 ft wide

Growth Rate
Growth Rate
Fast, Moderate

Dormancy
Dormancy
Evergreen

Fragrance
Fragrance
Fragrant - Pleasant

Flower Color
Flower Color
Cream, White, Yellow

Flowering Season
Flowering Season
Summer, Fall

Wildlife Supported
 


Landscaping Information
Sun
Sun
Full Sun

Moisture
Moisture
Low

Summer Irrigation
Summer Irrigation
Max 1x / month once established

Nurseries
Nurseries

Ease of Care
Ease of Care
Moderately Easy

Cold Tolerance
Cold Tolerance
Tolerates cold to -15° F

Soil Drainage
Soil Drainage
Medium

Soil Description
Soil Description
Tolerates a variety of soils. Soil PH: 6.0 - 8.0

Common uses
Common uses
Deer Resistant, Bird Gardens

Companion Plants
Companion Plants
Can be used with a very wide range of plants

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

Natural Setting
Site Type
Site Type
Found in a variety of settings and habitats including coastal sage scrub, chaparral, grasslands, woodlands, coniferous forests, meadows and disturbed places

Climate
Climate
Annual Precipitation: 5.2" - 67.6", Summer Precipitation: 0.13" - 4.46", Coldest Month: 21.2" - 56.5", Hottest Month: 40.3" - 81.0", Humidity: 0.23" - 32.57", Elevation: 7" - 12481"

Alternative Names
Common Names: Dragon Herb, False Tarragon, Green Sagewort, Silky Wormwood


Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora


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