Named after the Greek goddess Artemis, this soft aromatic shrub is one of the most popular medicinal plants in South Africa.
Artemisia afra is one of the oldest and best known medicinal plants, and is still used effectively today in South Africa by people of all cultures. The list of uses covers a wide range of ailments from coughs, colds, fever, loss of appetite, colic, headache, earache, intestinal worms to malaria.
African Wormwood is used in many different ways and one of the most common practices is to insert fresh leaves into the nostrils to clear blocked nasal passages (Van Wyk et al. 1997). Another maybe not so common use is to place leaves in socks for sweaty feet (Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk 1962). The roots, stems and leaves are used in many different ways and one of those is to be drunk as a tea. African Wormwood has a very bitter taste and is usually sweetened with honey when drunk.
Wilde-als brandy is a very popular medicine still made and sold today.
Artemisia Afra is a natural insecticide and is also used as a moth repellent. In today’s stressful society wilde-als, with its painkilling and relaxing properties is very valuable.