A green-silver bush of wormwood. A plant growing in the ground.

Wormwood: A Guide to Growing the Possessed Plant

Table of Contents


Top-rated Gardening Power Tools on Amazon

Do you want to take your herb garden to the next level and add some mystique to your collection? Look no further than wormwood, the famous herb used in absinthe and known for its intense, bitter flavor. In this complete guide, we’ll take you through everything you need to know to successfully cultivate and harvest this unique plant, from selecting the perfect soil to pruning for optimal growth. Get ready to impress your friends with your green thumb and your knowledge of exotic herbs!

Benefits of Growing Your Own Wormwood

Benefits of growing Wormwood at home:


Farmer Jer's Trading Post Ad
  • Repels insects and pests
  • Provides a natural insecticide
  • Improves digestion and reduces bloating
  • Can help relieve menstrual cramps
  • May have anti-inflammatory properties

General Information About Wormwood

Plant Family: Asteraceae (also known as the daisy or sunflower family)
Plant Latin Name: Artemisia absinthium

Plant Variations Available

Wormwood is an herbaceous plant that belongs to the Asteraceae family. It is native to Europe and Asia but has been naturalized in other parts of the world, including North America. There are several different species of wormwood, but the most well-known and commonly used is Artemisia absinthium.

The leaves and flowers of wormwood contain a compound called thujone, which is believed to be responsible for its medicinal properties. This plant has been used for centuries to treat a variety of health conditions, including digestive issues, fever, and even depression.

Wormwood is perhaps best known for its use in the production of absinthe, a highly alcoholic beverage that was popular in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The drink was banned in many countries due to its association with hallucinations and other negative side effects, which some attribute to the high levels of thujone in wormwood.


Top-rated Gardening Carts on Amazon

Today, wormwood is still used in the production of some alcoholic beverages, although it is strictly regulated by law. It is also used in herbal remedies and supplements, and has been studied for its potential anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and anti-cancer properties.

It is important to note that wormwood can be toxic in high doses, so it should always be used with caution and under the guidance of a healthcare provider. Pregnant and nursing women should avoid it entirely, as it may be harmful to developing fetuses and infants. Overall, wormwood is a unique and fascinating plant with a rich history and many potential health benefits when used properly.

Germinating Wormwood

Preferred Zones

Wormwood is a hardy perennial herb that is well-known for its use in absinthe, a potent alcoholic drink. If you’re looking to grow this herb in your outdoor garden, then you’ll be pleased to know that it is relatively low-maintenance and grows well in a variety of climates. In fact, wormwood is often considered a weed due to its hardy nature and tendency to grow prolifically.

So, what are the best zones for outdoor growing of wormwood? Well, wormwood is tolerant of a wide range of temperatures and can be grown in many zones across the United States. It can grow in USDA hardiness zones 4 through 9, which includes most of the country with the exception of the extreme northern and southern regions.

Wormwood prefers well-drained soil and full sun exposure, but can also tolerate partial shade. It is also a good choice for xeriscaping, as it can tolerate drought conditions once established. Make sure to give it enough space to grow as it can reach up to 4 feet in height and 3 feet in spread.

If you’re planning to use wormwood in cooking or for medicinal purposes, it is best to harvest the leaves and stems before the plant flowers, as this is when the essential oils are most concentrated. Wormwood can also be propagated through division or cuttings.

Overall, wormwood is a versatile and easy-to-grow herb that can be a great addition to your outdoor garden. With its hardy nature and adaptability, you’re sure to have success growing it in a variety of climate zones.

Sowing Instructions

If you are interested in growing your own wormwood, there are several steps you should follow to ensure a successful harvest. Wormwood is an herb that is commonly used for medicinal and culinary purposes, and it can be grown both indoors and outdoors.

To start, gather your supplies. You will need a seed tray or small pots, high-quality potting soil, and wormwood seeds. It is important to use fresh, high-quality seeds to increase your chances of success.

Next, fill your seed tray or pots with soil, leaving about half an inch of space at the top. Place two to three seeds in each pot, and cover them with a thin layer of soil. Be sure to label each pot so that you know what you’ve planted.

Wormwood seeds require light to germinate, so it is important to place your trays or pots in a bright, sunny location or under grow lights. Keep the soil moist but not waterlogged, and be patient. Wormwood seeds can take up to three weeks to germinate.

Once your seedlings have sprouted, you can thin them out to one plant per pot. Continue to water your plants regularly, and fertilize with a balanced fertilizer once a month.


Top-rated germination on Amazon

As your wormwood plants grow, you may need to transplant them into larger pots or into the ground outdoors. Wormwood prefers well-draining soil and full sun, so choose a location that meets these requirements.

Harvest your wormwood leaves and stems when they are fully mature, which typically occurs in late summer. Remove the leaves and stems from the plant, and dry them by hanging them upside down in a cool, dry location.

By following these steps, you can successfully grow your own wormwood and enjoy its many benefits.

Preparation Advice

Growing wormwood is a great way to add an herbaceous and slightly bitter flavor to cocktails, dishes, and teas. In order to successfully cultivate this plant, you’ll need to have the right equipment and follow a few simple guidelines.

First, you’ll need to select the best location for your wormwood. These plants prefer well-draining soil and full sun, so choose a spot in your garden or on your balcony that gets at least six hours of direct sunlight each day. If you’re growing indoors, make sure your wormwood has access to bright, indirect light.

Next, you’ll need to choose the right equipment for your wormwood. A 12- to 16-inch pot is ideal for growing wormwood indoors or in a small outdoor space. Make sure your pot has adequate drainage holes and is filled with well-draining soil.


Top-rated plant lights on Amazon

Once you have your location and equipment ready, it’s time to plant your wormwood. This herb can be started from seeds or cuttings, but it’s important to note that wormwood seeds can take up to a month to germinate, so be patient! When transplanting wormwood seedlings or cuttings, be careful not to disturb the roots too much and give the plant time to acclimate to its new environment.

When caring for your wormwood, it’s essential to water it regularly but not to overwater. Allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings, and be sure to check the moisture level by sticking your finger about an inch into the soil. Additionally, wormwood benefits from occasional fertilization with a balanced, all-purpose fertilizer.

In conclusion, growing wormwood is a fun and rewarding way to add an interesting twist to your culinary or cocktail creations. With the right location, equipment, and care, you can easily cultivate this unique herb in your own space.

Germination Tools and Equipment

If you’re looking to germinate your own wormwood, you’re in luck! This aromatic herb is easy to grow from seed with the right tools and equipment. Here are the essentials you’ll need:


Top-rated DIY Greenhouses on Amazon
  1. Seed Starter Tray – Starting your wormwood seeds in a seed starter tray is a great way to ensure proper soil moisture and temperature control. Look for a tray with individual compartments to keep seeds separate.
  2. Seed Starting Soil – High-quality, seed-starting soil is a must for successful germination. Choose a light and fluffy mix that will promote root growth.
  3. Warmth – Wormwood seeds need warmth to germinate, so a heat mat or warm location is ideal. Aim to keep the temperature around 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. Moisture – While wormwood seeds require some moisture to germinate, too much can lead to mold and rot. Keep the soil lightly moist, but not soaking wet.
  5. Light – Once your wormwood seeds have sprouted, they’ll need plenty of light to grow strong and healthy. A bright windowsill or grow light can provide the necessary illumination.

By providing your wormwood seeds with these five essential tools and pieces of equipment, you’ll be well on your way to growing healthy, vibrant plants that will add flavor and fragrance to your garden.

Growing Wormwood

Light Requirements

As you may already know, wormwood is a popular herb with a number of health benefits. Growing wormwood can be an enriching experience, as long as you give it the proper care it needs. One of the most important factors in growing healthy wormwood is lighting.

First off, wormwood thrives in full sun or partial shade. This means you’ll want to plant it in a location that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight a day if you want to see its full potential. If you’re growing wormwood indoors, it’s best to place it near a window that gets a lot of sunlight.

If you find that your wormwood isn’t getting enough direct sunlight, you may need to supplement its lighting with artificial light. You can purchase grow lights specifically designed for plants from any gardening store or online. The best type of grow light for wormwood is a full-spectrum LED light, as it mimics the natural sunlight that the plant needs to grow.

Make sure to keep the light source a few inches away from the plant to avoid burning the leaves. If you notice that the leaves are turning yellow or brown, it may be a sign that the light source is too close.

In conclusion, wormwood needs plenty of direct sunlight to grow healthy and strong. If you’re growing it indoors, make sure to provide it with a full-spectrum LED grow light to supplement its lighting needs. By following these lighting guidelines, you’ll be well on your way to growing a thriving wormwood plant.

Temperature Requirements

When it comes to growing healthy Wormwood, it is important to keep in mind that this plant is quite resilient and can tolerate a range of temperatures. However, for optimal growth and health, a few key temperature requirements should be met.


Top-rated Planting Soils on Amazon

Firstly, it is important to note that Wormwood is a hardy herbaceous perennial plant that is native to Europe and Asia. It is commonly grown for its medicinal and culinary properties, which include the treatment of digestive issues and the addition of a unique flavor to various dishes.

To ensure proper growth, Wormwood requires a dry, well-draining soil that is exposed to full sunlight or partial shade. In terms of temperature, this plant thrives in a temperate climate that is not too hot and not too cold. Optimal growth occurs in a temperature range of 15-25 degrees Celsius (59-77 degrees Fahrenheit).

It is important to note that Wormwood can tolerate light frost, but prolonged exposure to extreme cold temperatures below -7 degrees Celsius (19 degrees Fahrenheit) can damage the plant. Similarly, high temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit) can also cause harm to the plant, so it is important to protect it during heatwaves.

In conclusion, if you want to grow healthy Wormwood, make sure to keep the temperature range in mind. Aim for a temperate climate with a temperature range of 15-25 degrees Celsius (59-77 degrees Fahrenheit), and protect your plant from extreme heat or cold when necessary. With the right care and attention, you can nurture vibrant and thriving Wormwood plants that can serve you well in many ways.

My Favorite Tools For Growing Wormwood

Wormwood may seem like a mysterious and exotic plant, but caring for it doesn’t have to be complicated! Here are some essential tools and equipment you’ll need to keep your wormwood plant looking healthy and vibrant.

First and foremost, you’ll need a good pair of pruning shears. Regular trimming is necessary to keep wormwood from getting too leggy and sprawling. Plus, trimming helps promote new growth and keeps the plant looking neat and tidy.


Top-rated Watering Cans on Amazon

In addition to pruning shears, you’ll want to invest in a pair of sturdy gardening gloves. Wormwood leaves are sharp and can be irritating to the skin, so it’s always a good idea to protect your hands while working with this plant.

Another must-have tool is a watering can or hose with a gentle spray attachment. Wormwood thrives in soil that is consistently moist but not waterlogged, so regular watering is key. Make sure to avoid getting water on the leaves, as this can encourage fungal growth.

Finally, consider using an all-purpose fertilizer or compost to provide your wormwood with the nutrients it needs to thrive. Wormwood is a hardy plant, but a little extra TLC can go a long way in keeping it healthy and happy.

With these tools and equipment at your disposal, you’ll be well on your way to cultivating a thriving wormwood plant in your own backyard or indoor garden. Happy growing!


Top-rated Fertilizers on Amazon

Preferred Soil Type

When it comes to growing healthy wormwood, one of the most important factors is soil quality. Wormwood is a hardy plant that can tolerate a variety of soil types, but there are several key characteristics that you should aim for to ensure the best possible growth and harvest.

Firstly, wormwood prefers soil that is well-draining. This means that water should be able to percolate through the soil easily without pooling or causing stagnant conditions. To achieve this, it’s recommended to use a soil blend that includes perlite or vermiculite, as well as coarse sand/gravel (if necessary). This will help to prevent waterlogging, which can cause root rot and other issues.

Secondly, wormwood thrives in soil that is moderately fertile. This means that the soil should have enough organic matter to promote healthy growth, but not so much that it becomes overly rich. A good soil mix for wormwood could include compost, leaf mould, or well-rotted manure, along with a balanced organic fertilizer (e.g. 4-4-4) applied before planting.

Finally, wormwood prefers a slightly alkaline soil pH of around 7.0-8.0. This can be achieved by incorporating dolomite lime into the soil mix prior to planting. However, if your soil is already alkaline or if you’re growing wormwood in a container, you may want to test the pH periodically and adjust accordingly.

To summarize, growing healthy wormwood requires a well-draining soil that is moderately fertile and slightly alkaline. By selecting the right soil blend and maintaining optimal growing conditions, you can enjoy a bountiful harvest of this versatile herb.

Watering Requirements

Wormwood is a fascinating plant known for its medicinal properties, as well as being a potent insect repellant. But like all plants, wormwood requires proper watering to thrive and grow healthily.

When it comes to watering wormwood, you must strike a balance between providing enough moisture to encourage its growth, and not over-watering, which could lead to root rot and other issues.

The general rule of thumb for wormwood is to water it thoroughly once a week during the growing season. However, you should always check the soil moisture level before watering to avoid waterlogging the plant or leaving it too parched.

It’s also essential to note that wormwood prefers well-drained soil, so if the soil is heavy and clay-like, you should consider adding sand or other materials that will allow water to drain freely.


Top-rated Gardening Kits on Amazon

In addition to watering, wormwood will also benefit from organic fertilizers, such as compost or worm castings, which will provide vital nutrients and minerals to the soil.

In summary, watering wormwood can be a delicate balancing act, but by following these guidelines and using your best judgement, your plant will flourish and make a beautiful addition to your garden or medicinal herbs collection.

What You Need To Know About Fertilizing Wormwood

If you’re looking to grow wormwood, you’ll be happy to learn that it’s generally low-maintenance and doesn’t require a lot of feeding. However, there are still a few things you’ll want to consider when it comes to fertilizing.

Firstly, it’s important to note that wormwood prefers well-draining soil and plenty of sunlight. If you’re planting it in a pot, make sure there are drainage holes in the bottom to prevent excess water from pooling and causing root rot.

When it comes to fertilizing, wormwood doesn’t require a lot of nitrogen. In fact, too much nitrogen can actually be detrimental to the plant, as it can cause it to grow too tall and become weaker. Instead, wormwood prefers a soil that’s slightly alkaline with a pH of around 7.0-7.5.

One way to ensure your soil has the right pH balance is to add lime or wood ash to the soil before planting. Another option is to use a slow-release fertilizer that’s specifically designed for herbs. These types of fertilizers typically have a lower nitrogen content and higher levels of phosphorus and potassium, which are important for promoting root and flower development.

It’s also a good idea to avoid fertilizing wormwood during its dormant season, which is typically in the winter months. Instead, wait until spring when the plant starts to show new growth before applying any fertilizer.

Overall, wormwood is a fairly low-maintenance plant when it comes to fertilizing. As long as you ensure it has well-draining soil and plenty of sunlight, and you use a fertilizer that’s specifically designed for herbs, your wormwood should thrive and become a healthy and vibrant addition to your garden.

My Favorite Fertilizers For Wormwood

When it comes to fertilizing wormwood, there are a few things to keep in mind. First and foremost, wormwood is a hardy and adaptable plant, so it doesn’t require a lot of fertilizer to thrive. However, if you want to give your wormwood a little boost, there are a few options to consider.

One of the best fertilizers for wormwood is a high-quality organic compost. Compost is rich in nutrients and beneficial microbes that can help improve soil health and support healthy plant growth. You can apply compost to the soil around your wormwood plants in the spring or fall, or work it into the soil before planting.

Another option is to use a balanced, slow-release fertilizer. Look for a fertilizer that contains equal parts nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (NPK). This will help ensure that your wormwood is getting all of the nutrients it needs without overloading it with any one nutrient. Slow-release fertilizers are especially effective because they release nutrients over time, so your wormwood will get a steady supply of nutrients without any sudden spikes or drops.

Finally, you can also use natural fertilizers like fish emulsion or bone meal to give your wormwood a boost. These fertilizers are high in nutrients and are absorbed quickly by the plant, so they can be especially helpful if your wormwood is looking a little yellow or lackluster.

No matter what type of fertilizer you choose, be sure to follow the instructions carefully and avoid over-fertilizing. Wormwood is a hardy plant that can tolerate a wide range of growing conditions, but too much fertilizer can actually harm it and lead to leaf burn or other issues. With a little care and attention, you can help your wormwood grow strong and healthy all season long.

Harvesting Wormwood

Time To Maturity

Wormwood is a fascinating herb that is often used for both culinary and medicinal purposes. This plant is typically easy to grow and care for, making it a popular choice for gardeners and herbal enthusiasts alike. If you’re interested in growing wormwood, you may be wondering how long it takes for this herb to mature from a sprout.

Typically, wormwood seeds will germinate within 10-15 days of planting. Once they’ve sprouted, the plants will begin to grow rapidly, with new leaves and stems appearing over the course of several weeks. In general, you can expect your wormwood plant to reach maturity in about 2-3 months from the time you first plant the seeds.

It’s important to note, however, that the growth rate of wormwood may vary depending on a number of factors. These may include factors like the amount of sunlight and moisture the plant receives, as well as the overall health and vitality of the seedlings. Additionally, certain varieties of wormwood may take longer to mature than others, so it’s always a good idea to do your research and choose the right variety for your needs.


Top-rated Gardening Grow Tents on Amazon

In general, though, if you’re patient and diligent in caring for your wormwood plants, you can expect to see them mature from sprouts into full-grown herbs within a few months of planting. Whether you’re using this versatile herb for cooking, medicinal purposes, or as a beautiful addition to your garden, wormwood is sure to delight with its unique flavor, scent, and appearance.

Harvest Instructions

Harvesting Wormwood: A Comprehensive Guide

Wormwood, also known by its scientific name Artemisia absinthium, is a hardy perennial herb that belongs to the daisy family. It is widely known for its medicinal and culinary uses, especially in making absinthe, a popular alcoholic beverage. If you’re planning to harvest wormwood, here’s everything you need to know.

When to Harvest Wormwood

The ideal time to harvest wormwood is during the plant’s flowering stage. This typically happens between July and September when the plant is at its peak potency. You’ll know it’s time to harvest the herb when its flowers turn yellow, and the leaves are fragrant.

Tools and Equipment You’ll Need

  • – Pruning shears or a sharp knife
  • – Protective gloves
  • – A clean, dry basket or container
  • – A drying rack or dehydrator
  • – Paper or cheesecloth

The Steps to Harvesting Wormwood

  • Step 1: Choose a dry day: It’s best to harvest wormwood on a dry day when the sun isn’t too hot. This will ensure that the herb isn’t damp and won’t lose its potency during the drying process.
  • Step 2: Cut the stems: Using pruning shears or a sharp knife, cut the stem of the wormwood plant a few inches above the ground. Make sure to wear protective gloves to avoid getting cut or stung by the plant.
  • Step 3: Remove any unwanted parts: Remove any damaged, diseased, or discolored parts of the herb. Only keep the healthy and robust parts of the plant. This will ensure that the wormwood you harvest is of the highest quality.
  • Step 4: Dry the herb: Dry the wormwood stems by spreading them out on a drying rack or using a dehydrator on a low heat setting. This process can take anywhere from a few days to a week, depending on the humidity levels in your area. Once the herb is completely dry, it will be brittle and easy to crumble.
  • Step 5: Store the herb: Once the wormwood is dry, remove the leaves from the stem, crush them into small pieces, and store them in a clean, airtight container. You can also wrap the herb in paper or cheesecloth before placing them in a container to help preserve its flavor and aroma.

Harvesting wormwood isn’t complicated, but it does require some careful preparation and attention

My Favorite Tools For Harvest Time

When it comes to harvesting wormwood, there are a few essential tools and equipment that you’ll need to ensure you get the best results possible. Here are some indispensable items:

  1. Sharp Shears – Wormwood can be quite tough and woody, which can make it tricky to harvest without damaging the plant. A pair of sharp shears will make your job a lot easier and safer. Be sure to clean and sharpen them before use to avoid transferring disease from one plant to another.
  2. Gloves – Wormwood contains chemicals that can cause skin irritation, especially if you are sensitive or prone to allergies. For this reason, it’s recommended that you wear gloves while harvesting to protect your hands from potential irritants.
  3. Basket or Bucket – As you harvest wormwood, you’ll need a place to put the cuttings. A basket or bucket with a handle is ideal, as it makes it easy to carry and transport your harvest.
  4. Pruning Saw – If you’re dealing with large or mature wormwood plants, a pruning saw may be necessary to make cuts and remove larger branches. A small, handheld saw with a curved blade is a good option.
  5. Twine – Once you’ve harvested your wormwood, you’ll want to hang it upside down to dry. Twine is a must-have for this process, as it allows you to tie bundles of wormwood together and hang them up to dry in a cool, dark place.

By investing in these tools and equipment, you’ll be well-equipped to harvest wormwood safely and efficiently. Happy harvesting!

End of Season & Overwintering

As the end of the growing season approaches, it’s important to start thinking about how to care for your wormwood plant in preparation for the winter months. Here are some helpful tips to ensure your wormwood survives the cold season:

  1. Prune your wormwood: Cut back any damaged or dead stems and foliage to prevent disease and pest issues from carrying over to the next season.
  2. Clean up the soil: Remove any fallen leaves or debris from around the base of the plant to reduce the risk of rot or fungal growth.
  3. Mulch: Cover the soil around the base of the plant with a layer of organic mulch to regulate soil temperature, retain moisture, and protect the roots.
  4. Water: Continue to water your wormwood plant regularly until temperatures drop consistently below freezing.
  5. Move indoors: If you live in areas with harsh, snowy winters, consider moving your wormwood indoors to a cooler, well-lit area. Be sure to provide adequate airflow and adjust watering schedules as needed.

By taking these simple steps, you can help protect your wormwood and ensure it returns healthy and thriving next season. Happy gardening!

Final Thoughts on Wormwood

And there you have it, a complete guide to successfully germinating, growing, and harvesting wormwood. Remember to start with fresh seeds and keep your soil moist and well-drained. Don’t forget to give your plants enough sunlight and air circulation. As your wormwood plants mature, they will release a unique, bitter scent, which makes it a popular choice for making traditional absinthe. When harvesting, cut the stems at the base and hang them upside down in a cool, dry place. With patience and care, you’ll soon have your very own thriving wormwood garden. Happy growing!

Frequently Asked Questions About Growing Wormwood

Q: What is wormwood and what are its benefits?
A: Wormwood is an herbaceous perennial plant with greenish-gray leaves and tiny, yellow flowers. It is commonly used in many cultures as a natural remedy for a variety of health concerns such as boosting digestion and treating worm infections. Wormwood has also been found to have antimicrobial properties, aiding in wound healing and managing inflammation.

Q: How do I grow wormwood?
A: Wormwood can be grown indoors or outdoors, and it prefers well-draining soil and full sun exposure. Seeds can be started indoors in the spring or sown directly outdoors after the last frost. The plant requires little maintenance and can tolerate dry conditions. However, be aware that wormwood can become invasive if not managed properly, so make sure to prune it regularly.

Q: Can wormwood be used in cooking?
A: Yes, wormwood can be used sparingly in cooking, but it is important to note that this herb is quite bitter and strong in flavor. It is commonly used in absinthe, a highly alcoholic drink with a bitter taste. It also pairs well with citrus fruits, and can add a unique flavor to marinades or meat dishes. Consult a recipe or experienced cook for tips on how to use wormwood in your meals.

Keep reading more gardening greats:

Keep reading more gardening greats:

Keep reading more gardening greats:


Top-rated Gardening Stools on Amazon

More Herbs? Yes, Please!

Scroll to Top