Artemisia campestris (Field Sagewort)

Plant Info
Also known as: Tall Wormwood
Family:Asteraceae (Aster)
Life cycle:biennial, short-lived perennial
Habitat:sun; dry sandy soil; fields, prairies
Bloom season:July - September
Plant height:18 to 40 inches
Wetland Indicator Status:GP: UPL MW: UPL NCNE: UPL
MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):Minnesota county distribution map
National distribution (click map to enlarge):National distribution map

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Detailed Information

Flower: Flower shape: indistinct Cluster type: panicle

[photo of flowers] Hundreds of nodding, 1/8-inch round, yellowish-green petal-less flowers on short stalks, in long, mostly erect, branching clusters in the upper plant.

Leaves and stem: Leaf attachment: alternate Leaf type: lobed Leaf type: simple

[photo of leaves] Leaves towards the base of the plant are tightly packed, up to 6 inches long, deeply divided into 3 or more long, narrow lobes, are sometimes hairy, and frequently wither away by flowering time (deciduous). Upper leaves are more sparse, smaller and may be undivided. The stem is ridged and is green or dark red; 1 to a few stems may emerge from the base and typically branch in the upper plant, the branches erect to ascending.


There are 3 recognized subspecies of A. campestris, with subsp. caudata found in Minnesota and much of North America east of the Rockies. Most similar is Wild Tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus), which has similar leaves but flower clusters that are more open and less erect. Tarragon also is typically strongly scented, where Field Sagewort has little to no scent.

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More photos

Photos by K. Chayka taken in Ramsey County. Photos courtesy Peter M. Dziuk taken in Ramsey and Anoka counties.


Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?

Posted by: Deane J - Park Rapids
on: 2017-08-02 23:33:00

Dry sandy shelf above our beach is full of this. Botanical Wanderings site helped with ID and I was surprised to see it was native, as it looked so weedy.

Posted by: Gary - Carlton
on: 2019-03-05 08:47:51

In the town of Carlton on rock outcrops.

Posted by: Domini Brown - Grey Cloud Dunes SNA
on: 2021-04-19 09:45:02

We spotted many fresh young sprouts of Artemisia campestris at Grey Cloud Dunes SNA in Cottage Grove.

Posted by: Julie - Cass County
on: 2021-06-14 12:03:29

One of these has volunteered on my very dry sandy septic mound.

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