Silver Wormwood / Buffalo Sage / White Sage
- Average to dry soils
- Full Sun to light shade
- 3’ to 4’ tall, 12’ to 18” wide, spreading fairly quickly to form a patch
- Inconspicuous summer blooms
- Ontario Native, Thrives in Meadow and Dry
While this species has several common names, I’ve been sticking with Silver Wormwood since Wormwood is a name that is most often associated with Artemisia and Silver is very descriptive, without causing confusion. The common name that was on the seed packet that these came to me in was White Sage, but I find that is a common name that causes a great deal of confusion because it is shared with the far more famous Salvia apiana, which is a Sage species native to the south-western regions of this continent, rather than Ontario, and isn’t winter hardy in this area.
Silver Wormwood is a spreading perennial that thrives in dry locations. I find that their open form displays best when interplanted with other perennials or meadow species, since they often don’t form dense clumps
While their preferred conditions are bright sunny settings, they can grow in part shade but will become rather floppy or reclining is those spaces. Rich or overly moist soil can also lead to floppy stems, although they will happily rely on support of sturdier neighbours, without being so weighty as to push them over. Their height varies between 18” and 48”, depending on moisture levels (the wetter, the taller) and the heights of surrounding plants.
These are happy to wander through the garden, adding a splash of silvery white as an accent to the green foliage and bright flowers of neighbouring plants. They aren’t inclined to stay in one place though, so do please keep their nature in mind when choosing a space for them.
They dry beautifully and can be gathered in the fall, even after a hard frost, for including in autumn and winter arrangements and decorations.
Parent plants grown from seeds from Wildflower Farm (ignore the photo on the listing, it doesn't represent the plants well, the actual parent plants are in the photos on this page)