The botanical name is Artemisia absintium, it is a rhizomatous perennial plant, widespread in nature throughout Europe and used since ancient times for its tonic and purifying properties. From the rhizomatous roots, thin erect, well-branched stems develop, which over time tend to become woody in the part closest to the ground, the plants develop for about 50-70 cm each year, and with the arrival of the cold they dry out, in late autumn. The foliage is gray-green in color, with a delicate appearance, finely engraved. In summer, at the apex of the stems, small yellow flowers bloom, gathered in inflorescences.
The foliage is covered with a thin hair, which makes it a particular color; the hairs are so thin and delicate that they are not felt to the touch. Artemisia leaves are very aromatic, and if you eat they have a strong bitter taste.
Absinthe as an aromatic and medicinal herb
The thin mugwort leaves contain many active ingredients, an oil is extracted that contains active substances called lactones, whose name refers to the name of the plant, in fact we find absintin, anabsintine and anabsin.
This plant has been used since ancient times as an anti-inflammatory, digestive, antiseptic, tonic, digestive; in addition to these properties that make it useful in herbal medicine, in ancient times absinthe was also used as an insecticide, in the form of an infusion, and also as a repellent against rodents.
The excessive consumption of large quantities of absinthe can cause unpleasant side effects, as occurs for most plants that contain active ingredients; therefore it is not advisable to prepare absinthe-based herbal teas to be consumed daily for long periods of time.