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Uses

Toxic parts

Although no reports of toxicity have been seen for this species, skin contact with some members of this genus can cause dermatitis or other allergic reactions in some people[1].

Edible uses

Notes

Leaves - raw or used as a flavouring in soups etc[2][3][4][5][6]. Tarragon is a commonly used herbal flavouring that is used in many traditional recipes[7]. It is particularly of value because of its beneficial effect upon the digestion and so is often used with oily foods[7]. The leaves can also be harvested in late summer and dried for later use[3]. The aromatic leaves have a very nice flavour that is somewhat liquorice-like[183, K]. They make an excellent flavouring in salads[K]. The young shoots can also be cooked and used as a potherb[8]. The leaves are used as a flavouring in vinegar[3]. An essential oil from the leaves is used as a flavouring[9].

Unknown part

Leaves

Material uses

The leaves contain about 0.3% essential oil, about 70% of which is methyl chivacol[10]. This is used as a food flavouring, in detergents and also medicinally[9][11]. Both the growing and the dried plant repels insects[12].

Unknown part

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

Tarragon is a bitter warming aromatic herb that stimulates the digestive system and uterus, lowers fevers and destroys intestinal worms[11]. It is little used in modern herbalism, though it is sometimes employed as an appetizer[13].

The leaves (and an essential oil obtained from them) are antiscorbutic, diuretic, emmenagogue, hypnotic and stomachic[5][14][15][11]. An infusion is used in the treatment of indigestion, flatulence, nausea, hiccups etc[7]. The plant is mildly sedative and has been taken to aid sleep[16]. It also has mild emmenagogue properties and can be used to induce a delayed period[16]. A poultice can be used to relieve rheumatism, gout, arthritis and toothache[7]. The plant is harvested in the summer and can be dried for later use[11]. This herb should not be prescribed for pregnant women[11]. The root has been used to cure toothache[3].

The essential oil is used in aromatherapy to treat digestive and menstrual problems[11].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - surface sow from late winter to early summer in a greenhouse. Fertile seed is rarely produced from this plant - most if not all seed supplied under this name is of the inferior form, Russian tarragon (A. dracunculoides). Therefore, it is best to only propagate by division.

Division is very easy in spring or autumn[K]. The divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions, though we prefer to pot them up first and grow them on in a cold frame until they have rooted well.

Basal cuttings in late spring. Harvest young shoots about 10 - 15c long and pot them up in a lightly shaded place in a greenhouse or cold frame. Plant them out into their permanent positions when well rooted. A very quick and easy method of propagation[K].

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Artemisia dracunculus. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

Easily grown in a well-drained circumneutral or slightly alkaline loamy soil, preferring a warm sunny dry position[17][6][18][19][20]. Plants are not very long-lived when grown in clay soils[21]. Plants are longer lived, more hardy and more aromatic when they are grown in a poor dry soil[22]. Established plants are drought tolerant[21][20]. Tolerates a pH in the range 6.5 to 7.8.

Plants are relatively hardy in Britain, but can be killed in wet winters. It is best to grow tarragon in a dry, rather poor soil since this will produce hardier plants[3]. The dry soil will also help to reduce predation by slugs, these creatures are very fond of the young growth and have been known to completely destroy even well-established plants[K]. When well suited, the plants can spread freely at the roots[K]. The flowers do not open in cool summers and viable seed is seldom produced[11]. Often grown in the herb garden, tarragon is also sometimes grown commercially for its edible leaves which are used mainly as a flavouring[23]. There is at least one named variety, 'Epicure' is a new fragrant cultivar[8]. There is a closely related species, A. dracunculoides or Russian tarragon, which is quite inferior in flavour, though sometimes supplied under this name. A good companion for most plants, especially aubergines and sweet peppers[24].

Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[25].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Artemisia dracunculus. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Artemisia dracunculus.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Artemisia dracunculus
Genus
Artemisia
Family
Compositae
Imported References
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
6
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
light shade
Soil PH
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
  • Drought
Ecosystems
Native Climate Zones
None listed.
Adapted Climate Zones
None listed.
Native Geographical Range
None listed.
Native Environment
None listed.
Ecosystem Niche
None listed.
Root Zone Tendancy
None listed.
Life
Deciduous or Evergreen
?
Herbaceous or Woody
?
Life Cycle
Growth Rate
?
Mature Size
Fertility
?
Pollinators
Flower Colour
?
Flower Type

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"image:Starr 080117-2173 Artemisia dracunculus.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

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