This plant is native to the western United States coastline extending from central Oregon to southern California. It is a leafy perennial wormwood forming clumps about 50 cm (20 inches) in height. It extends erect stems covered in dense foliage which ranges in color from light green to nearly white. The fuzzy inflorescences are studded with small lobular leaves and rounded yellowish flower buds. The plant is aromatic but much less so than are other wormwoods.
Plant community and distribution
Artemisia pycnocephala is native to Oregon's and California's Coastal Strand plant community where it enjoys rocky and sandy soil. According to The University of California @ Berkeley and Jepson Herbaria, this plant prefers to grow under 200 m. The plant's range within the State of California stretches primarily from Del Norte County to San Luis Obispo County, with isolated populations reported from Los Angeles and San Diego Counties.
- The Plant List Artemisia pycnocephala (Less.) DC.
- Calflora taxon report, University of California, Artemisia pycnocephala (Less.) DC. Beach Sagewort, Beach sage, coastal sagewort
- Flora of North America, Coastal sagewort, Artemisia pycnocephala (Lessing) de Candolle in A. P. de Candolle and A. L. P. P. de Candolle, Prodr. 6: 99. 1838.
- The University of California and Jepson Herbaria, Treatment for Jepson's Manual
- California Native Plant Link Exchange
- Biota of North America Program 2014 county distribution map
- Sunny Gardens, Artemisia pycnocephala, Uses Retrieved on June 13th, 2012
- Calflora Database: Artemisia pycnocephala (Beach sagewort, Coastal sagewort)
- Jepson Manual eFlora (TJM2) treatment of Artemisia pycnocephala
- Artemisia pycnocephala in the CalPhotos Photo Database, University of California, Berkeley
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