Meet mugwort, the prolific wild herb worth foraging for a treat | Alys Fowler

With notes of rosemary and sage, the aromatic flowering plant lends its subtle flavours to baking, roasting and even a bit of seasonal winemaking

Mugwort is a wild thing that loves our edges, from paths and urban riverbanks to feral car-park corners and wastelands. Its leaves, with their silvery undersides and feathery plumes of flowers, thrive in these seemingly inhospitable conditions: I’m not sure I’d recommend you plant it in your garden, but if you live near such places, you may find it appears anyway.

Mugwort, Artemisia vulgaris, has a long history of being a powerful, protective herb, used to treat everything from malaise to irregular periods, and to flavour many a brewing experiment (it was one of the most common flavourings for beer until hops took over in the 16th century).

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