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Artemisia ludoviciana albula ‘Valerie Finnis’ (photo courtesy of Denver Botanic Gardens)
Artemisia ludoviciana albula ‘Valerie Finnis’ (photo courtesy of Denver Botanic Gardens)

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Zone
Zones 7-9, 14-24
Full Sun
Full
Regular WaterMinimal Water
Moderate, Minimal

Artemisia californica

California Sagebrush
Asteraceae (Compositae)
Evergreen, Ground covers, Shrubs

ARTEMISIA

Several species are valuable for interesting leaf patterns and silvery gray or white aromatic foliage (flowers are generally insignificant). Most kinds are excellent in mixed borders, where their white or silvery leaves soften harsh reds and oranges and blend beautifully with blues, lavenders, and pinks. Provide good drainage. Cut nonwoody-stemmed perennials to ground in late fall to rejuvenate; prune back woody perennials and shrubs (into older wood if necessary) before first flush of spring growth. Divide perennials in spring or fall; propagate shrubs by cuttings.

Artemisia californica

Native to coastal region from Northern California to Baja California. Grows to 1 1/2–5 ft. tall, 4–7 ft. wide, with finely divided, aromatic, grayish white leaves. Foliage is lush in winter and somewhat sparse in summer. Reseeds manageably. Superior selections include ‘Canyon Gray’, which grows 1–2 ft. tall (with occasional pruning of upright stems) and 6–10 ft. wide; and ‘Montara’, with a mounding habit to 2 ft. tall and 3–5 ft. wide. Both make excellent groundcovers.

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