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Powis Castle Wormwood PlantsPowis Castle Wormwood Plants

Powis Castle Wormwood Plants

Artemisia arborescens Powis CastleFeefo logo

The details

Artemisia arborescens - Wormwood

  • Colour: silvery green
  • Flowering: insignificant yellow flowers in Aug
  • Foliage: silver-green, feathery
  • Height x spread: 60cm x 90cm
  • Spacing: 80cm
  • Position: sun
  • Soil: well-drained
  • Awards: RHS AGM
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£ 5.82

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Artemisia arborescens Powis Castle

Despite having no flowers worth mentioning Artemisia Powis Castle is a seriously popular plant. Those in the know prize it for its wonderful airy, light feathery foliage in shimmering silvery green. 

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However, it's that supporting "foliage" act that really makes the stars of pots and borders shine; Powis Castle forms a backdrop in front of which showier perennials can pose, preen and look their very best. Artemisia is also great for texture, which should never be underestimated, both in container arrangements and borders. And let's not forget that coveted RHS Award of Garden Merit, which means it's been tried and tested and found to grow well in pretty much all garden conditions.

In the garden

Sun, sun and more sun is what this pretty perennial needs. So give it an open spot in a south-facing border, or a roomy container on a sunny patio and it will thrive, growing up to 90cm – as long as it's not planted on clay. If you garden on clay, dig in generous amounts of garden compost and horticultural grit and you might just get away with it. Artemisias hate to get cold and waterlogged in winter clay. Cut it back in early spring to maintain its shape, treating it a little like a lavender; it's a woody perennial that needs a trim but won't grow from old wood.

Knowing what to plant it with is the key to making Artemisia work in your garden. Pinks and purples are fabulous against its silvery foliage, so choose flowering perennials such as Eryngiums, Campanulas, dark blue salvias and rich purple Hidcote lavender as companions. Furry, silver-leaved Stachys (lambs ears) make a gorgeous textural contrast, too. Or use it to underplant a soft pink shrub rose such as Nathalie Nypels for a dreamy silver and pink palette. The same advice works well in pots: give it a decent sized container and plant with, say, rich-pink marguerites, deep purple petunias or pale pink bacopa.


  • Colour: silvery-green foliage
  • Flowering: insignificant yellow flowers in Aug
  • Foliage: silver-green, feathery and light
  • Height: 60cm
  • Spread: 90cm
  • Spacing: 80cm
  • Position: sun
  • Soil: well-drained, any but clay

A grand lineage

The plant was popularised by its use at Powis Castle, once home to Robert Clive and his treasures collected in India. A medieval castle just outside Welshpool, it's a star in the National Trust firmament, with sweeping views to the huge gardens that tumble dramatically below. It also has some of the most magnificent container plantings we've ever seen. Also called Brass Band in some older sources. 

Cultivation Instructions

Artemisia Powis Castle needs full sun. Grows well in fertile, well-drained soil, spaced about 80cm apart. Dig in garden compost when planting and water well. Also good in pots. Works well as a foil to flowering perennials in blues and pinks, and as an underplanting to shrub roses.

Trim lightly in spring.