NOTE: In this article, Southernwood and Artemisia abrotanum may be used interchangeably; in fact, Artemisia abrotanum is the botanical name for Southernwood.
There are many species in the Artemisia genus. The southernwood is one of the oldest and most widely grown plants. This perennial grows in a small mound with upright branches. It has gray-green to green foliage which makes it smell like camphor.
Southernwood has been used as an air freshener in the past, but these days it is used as a natural insect deterrent. It’s grown in orchards to repel fruit tree moths, and it’s also used to keep ants at bay. Its flowers are small and not very attractive. The best time to plant Southernwood is in the spring.
Why does my Artemisia abrotanum roots have rot?
If left untreated, root rot on your Southernwood (Artemisia abrotanum) can be fatal. For this reason, if the symptoms appear, we highly advise that you adhere to our recommendations to keep your plant alive: Blackened and softened roots.
Why does my Southernwood have gray mold spots?
Gray mold spots are a type of fungus that is found a lot in flowers, and spreads quite rapidly. If you notice brown (or gray) spots, it is probably this fungus. Don’t ignore these symptoms, as they may end up killing your plant.
The solution is quite logical when you know the cause of the problem. Most of the time, it is due to overwater of the Artemisia abrotanum. We advise you to remove the infected parts of the plant, cut off the infected roots and leaves, then repot your plant using sterile potting soil and a clean pot.
Why does my Southernwood have leaf spots?
If your plants exhibit symptoms like rapid color changes in the leaves or leaves that wilt or droop, we give you all the information you need to recognize them and rescue your plants. For owners of Southernwood, this kind of illness is among the most distressing.
Why are my Southernwood leaves turning yellow?
This is probably the most common problem in the gardening world, yellowing leaves. There are 2 main reasons for this phenomenon, overwatering, or a lack of nutrients.
When it’s overwatering, simply reduce your watering frequency, and if you think it’s a nutrient deficiency, here’s how to check it:
Here are some indicators of yellowing on the Artemisia abrotanum brought on by its numerous flaws:
- Yellow patches between leaf veins on elder leaves are the first sign of magnesium shortage. Veins continue to be green while the leaf’s core turns yellow. The leaf’s edges yellow last.
- Iron deficiency also shows as yellowing between leaf veins, but it hits young leaves on plant tops and branch tips first.
- The newest leaves are first affected by sulfur deficiency, rendering them completely yellow.
- Leaf edges turning bright yellow but inside leaf remaining green are signs of potassium insufficiency. The symptoms first appear on older leaves, and the leaf edges quickly become dark.
- A broad yellowing indicates a nitrogen deficiency. Yellowing starts with older, inner leaves. Yellowing spreads as it advances, eventually touching new leaves as well.
According to the symptoms mentioned above, you just have to act accordingly. You can reduce your watering frequency, or fix a deficiency in Potassium, or Nitrogen, for that, you just have to buy a special soil for your deficiency, a consultant in a gardening store will know perfectly well how to inform you.
Is my Southernwood sunburned?
You can easily tell if your Southernwood (your Artemisia abrotanum) has a sunburn. In this case, your plant will change color, starting to turn yellow or white, much like it does on us.
The leaves of your Southernwood can also change color in case it gets too much water or not enough light, as we saw above.
The bottom of the yellow leaves with a shaded area closer to the base can be examined to determine if they have been sunburned. If this part remains greener, the yellow leaf is most likely sunburned and not something else.
Why are my Southernwood leaves turning brown?
The classic sign that a plant has been overexposed to direct sunlight and sunburned is the development of browning leaves. Rest assured that while this may probably save your plant from dying, it will adversely affect its growth.
Should I leave my Artemisia abrotanum in direct sunlight?
No! Don’t leave your Artemisia abrotanum (or Southernwood) in the sun if it displays the symptoms mentioned above; that’s why it’s in such a bad situation.
As stated in the paragraph above, the cure is straightforward: simply position your plant’s Southernwood so that it is out of direct sunlight. With proper watering and this method, your plant should quickly come back to life.
Why are my Artemisia abrotanum leaves drooping or wilting ?
This typically occurs when your Artemisia abrotanum gets dehydrated. Large plants are more at risk since they naturally require more water than smaller plants.
An easy way to know if your Artemisia abrotanum is lacking water is to under-weigh its pot, if it looks light, it means that the soil and the roots are probably quite dry, and therefore need water!
In order to ensure that the roots of your plant receive the water’s benefits, you must first moisten the soil in the container if it is absolutely dry. One common error is to immediately drown the Southernwood after a dry period in the belief that it requires a lot of water.
This is the case, but giving too much water at once is the best way to finish it off, you should actually water the soil normally, resuming a quiet watering rhythm.
Caring Tips for Artemisia abrotanum
Your plant needs water to survive, but it’s crucial to balance the amount and timing of watering. As we previously mentioned, overwatering could be catastrophic for your Artemisia abrotanum.
Touching the soil will let you know whether your plant needs water or not; if it still feels damp, it’s generally best to wait a few more days.
Always keep temperatures stable
It’s also a good idea to keep your Artemisia abrotanum at a constant temperature, especially if it’s kept indoors. In general, at GreenShack, we suggest booking a temperature between 65 and 85 degrees F. Of course, keep your Artemisia abrotanum away from radiators, air conditioners, and other sources of hot or cold air.
Keep your Southernwood Dust-Free
This one is about houseplants. Your indoor plants’ leaves get dusty just like your furniture does. The problem is that this might prevent photosynthesis from beginning, which would result in the plants gradually losing their color.
This would be a true journey into hell for your Southernwood and would also satisfy the pests.
Take a microfiber cloth and gently massage the plant’s leaves to get rid of the dust. Use a damp cloth to make dust removal easier, but avoid using corrosive materials like rubbing alcohol!
Keep drainage in mind
If you have a tendency to overwater, you need to keep an eye on your drainage, we advise you to opt for a pot with drainage holes if it is not already the case and a saucer.
You can add volcanic rocks (or any other pebbles with holes) to the bottom of your pot in the interim if your pots don’t already have holes in them. This will help to form a channel so that the water doesn’t pool there for too long (preventing the rot of the roots!).