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Artemisia Tridentata Sagebrush

Updated on April 12, 2011

Artemisia tridentata is a plant of the Asteraceae family, native to the western United States, where it is known by the common name of sagebrush.It is a herbal plant.


It looks like a silvery-gray shrub, along rivers or in other relatively wet areas, can grow up to 3 m high, but usually does not exceed 1-2 m.

Artemisia tridentata is characterized by a strong fragrance and pungent, especially when wet, like sage. But it is not related with it and it tastes bitter. It is thought that the smell will serve to discourage the curious.

The leaves, 1-4 cm long and 0.3 to 1 cm wide, spatulate-obovate in the margins are smooth and are connected to the branch at the narrowest. The largest and outer lobes usually end with 3 (sometimes 2 or 4), hence the specific name "trident". The leaves are covered with fine silvery hairs which are thought to maintain the fresh leaf and thus minimize water loss.

Most of the leaves are annual, also saw the A. tridentata tend to live in areas where winter precipitation is larger than the summer.

It blooms in late summer or early autumn. The flowers are yellow, in clusters long and slender.

Distribution and Habitat

It grows in the arid western United States. Is the primary vegetation of large areas of the Great Basin desert.


The plant is highly allergenic to humans and can cause dermatitis if applied to the skin of allergic individuals. The plant essential oils are metabolized in the liver to toxic compounds that can cause blood clotting and subsequent formation of micro-thrombi in the liver and digestive tract.

Native Americans used as a topical remedy Artemisia tridentata to stop internal bleeding caused by injuries from battle or in childbirth


The flower of RA. tridentata is the flower symbol of the state of Nevada.


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    • daffodil2010 profile image

      daffodil2010 6 years ago

      thanks for reading and commenting

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 6 years ago from the short journey

      Interesting...looking forward to checking out your series of hubs on artemisia.