*Artemisia vulgaris Linnaeus. Subgenus: Artemisia. Phen: Jul-Nov. Hab: Roadsides, pastures, fencerows, disturbed areas. Dist: Native of Eurasia.
Origin/Endemic status: Eurasia
Taxonomy Comments: More research is needed on the actual distribution of Artemisia vulgaris and A. verlotiorum in North America. In Europe, A. umbrosa is a name that has often been misapplied to A. verlotiorum as the two taxa (both within subg. Artemisia) bear a close resemblance. A. verlotiorum occurrences have been obscured in Europe (e.g. Ukraine), and South Africa (Verloove et al. 2021), due to misidentifications and historical taxonomic confusion. Verloove et al. (2021) has hinted towards a similar pattern that may exist for North America, but this issue is currently not resolved. A number of additional characters (other than those listed in this key) have been purported to distinguish A. verlotiorum and A. vulgaris; however, there seems to be some discrepancies with associated specimen images in recent publications that contradict or convolute these apparent distinctions. For instance, some authors state that the inflorescence of A. verlotiorum is a wide panicle (Verloove and Andeweg 2020), or with branches bearing an arcuate form (Verloove 2013); however, specimens shown by other authors as apparently A. verlotiorum have compact inflorescences (Verloove et al. 2021). Verloove et al. (2021) suggest the presence of white sessile glands on the leaves of A. vulgaris as being diagnostic, with these glands apparently being early deciduous or merely absent in A. verlotiorum, but they did not explore this in depth or seem to pin down certain vegetative morphometric distinctions; they were perhaps overwhelmed by morphological variation. Some authors state that both taxa are aromatic (Stace 2010), while others suggest that A. verlotiorum is "clearly aromatic", and A. vulgaris has a "faint, non-aromatic scent" (Verloove et al. 2021). Adding to this complexity is the possibility of hybrid material (A. ×wurzellii) occurring in our area, which would first require the establishment of precise identification resources and documentation for both taxa. A. ×wurzellii can apparently be distinguished from its parents by the group of pectinate appendages at the junction of the leaf blade and petiole (petiolar pectinations) that are broader, shorter, and more abruptly acute (Verloove et al. 2020). Given the documented but historically overlooked occurrences of other exotic Artemisia taxa elsewhere, it is also possible that the conspicuous establishment of other non-native taxa has similarly occurred in the e. US. Despite numerous papers that have recently been published regarding the taxonomy and ecology of A. verlotiorum, there is still seemingly large overlaps in some morphological characters, and there still remains a lack of precise measurement and morphometric data regarding this taxon and closely related congeners. Botanists, managers, and ecologists alike would benefit greatly from some clarity regarding the identity and distribution of weedy Artemisia taxa in North America, specifically from research that provides precise morphometric data that will allow for accurate field identification. In the least, concerted efforts to collect specimens with fully intact root systems at anthesis, and a review of current herbarium specimens available may help to clarify these occurrences within our area.
Synonymy: = Ar, Fl7, FNA19, K3, K4, Mi, Mo2, NY, Oh3, Pa, RAB, S, SE1, Tn, Va, WH3, Arriagada & Miller (1997), Yeou-Ruenn (1995); < Artemisia vulgaris L. – C, G; > Artemisia vulgaris L. var. glabra Ledeb. – F, Il; > Artemisia vulgaris L. var. latiloba Ledeb. – F, Il; > Artemisia vulgaris L. var. vulgaris – F, Il, K1, NE