Absinthium laxum Lam.
Absinthium mutellina Steud.
Absinthium petrosum Baumg.
Artemisia baumgartenii Besser
Artemisia delphinensis Besser
Artemisia eriantha Ten.
Artemisia gabriellae Braun-Blanq.
Artemisia godronii Rouy ex E.P.Perrier
Artemisia laxa (Lam.) Fritsch
Artemisia laxiflora St.-Lag.
Artemisia mutellina Vill.
Artemisia oligantha Miégev.
Artemisia petrosa (Baumg.) Jan
Artemisia petrosa DC.
Artemisia petrosa Fritsch
Artemisia rupestris All.
Artemisia transsilvanica Schur
Artemisia villarsii Gren. & Godr.
Artemisia wulfenii Schleich.
Common Name: Alpine Wormwood
Artemisia umbelliformis is an aromatic, herbaceous perennial plant with a branched, woody rootstock. The plant forms a mat of low, sterile stems and one to several flowering stems around 25cm tallp200].
An important alpine plant, much harvested from the wild and used to make flavoured beverages, including the highly prized Alpine liqueur known as 'Genepi' which is of considerable commercial importance. Due to its rarity and high cost, the plant it is cultivated in the Alps of Italy, France and Switzerland for its essential oil and for use as a cosmetic[
Artemisia umbelliformis is a naturally rare Alpine plant which has undergone declines as a result of indiscriminate picking for its use in the production of the liquor 'Genepi'. Its collection is now prohibited in Switzerland and Italy, but continues in France on a regulated level. It is widely cultivated within these regions for liquor production (except in southern France where it is still collected), which has relieved collection pressure on wild populations and thereby is preventing further declines. Its status in other countries within its range is more uncertain; there is a lack of information on the population and distribution in the Carpathian and Balkan mountains. Given its broad distribution and the protection measures currently in place across parts of its range (precisely in the regions where collection has been most well-documented), the plant is provisionally listed as Least Concern. However, if its population is small and collection pressure is high across its range, and given its increased rarity, it may warrant listing in a higher category of threat. The plant is classified as 'Least Concern' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2013)[
Although we have seen no specific reports for this species, many members of this genus contain potentially allergenic sesquiterpene lactones that can cause skin reactions[
Europe - mountainour regions of Poland, Romania, France, Spain, Italy, through the Balkans to Greece
Mountain rocks, moraines and river gravels[
]. Alpine grassland, gravelly plateaus, rocks and stabilized screes on limestone, rocky crevices, granite, often mylonitized granite, flysch and serpentine; at an elevation from 1,900 - 2,800 metres[
|Conservation Status||Least Concern
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Wild
Easily grown in a well-drained circumneutral or slightly alkaline loamy soil, preferring a warm sunny dry position. Established plants are drought tolerant[
]. Plants are longer lived, more hardy and more aromatic when they are grown in a poor dry soil[
An aromatic plant[
Plants in the wild have a life cycle of 10 years, whereas those in cultivation only live for 3 - 5 years; flowers are produced in the second year and diminish after 3 - 4 years[
Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[
The herb is used in the preparation of a tea and a liqueur, often with the addition of absinthe[
]. The leaves are used as a condiment[
The highly scented, dried flowering parts were originally used in traditional medicine to prepare herbal infusions against coughs[
The extract of the plant is rich in essential oil, tannins and flavanoids. It is used in cosmetic applications for its anti-oxidative, radical scavenging, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties[
Seed - surface sow from late winter to early summer in a greenhouse, making sure that the compost does not dry out[
]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer.
Division in spring or autumn[
Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest the young shoots when about10 - 15cm long, pot up in a lightly shaded position in a greenhouse or cold frame and plant them out when well rooted. Very easy.