Mugwort (Artemisia Vulgaris)
Smooth Garden Tobacco
Historically Mugwort was also called Sailor’s Tobacco. It can be smoked, chewed, eaten, brewed in water for tea, cooked as an herb, or used as potpourri. Mugwort leaf is similar to Mums, Wormwood, Sweet Annie, and Monkshood. The flowers are small white or magenta clusters that easily reseed themselves annually, and spread with multiple individual root bases and stems nearby (not as a unified root group clusters like catmint or lemon balm). It is smoother and more mild than tobacco or pot, so it blends nicely with those.
Mugwort grows as an annual from Spring to Fall, dies, and grows back next year from its own dropped seeds. My experience chewing it is that it numbs the tongue, and its taste is mildly bitter like tea leaves. Inhaling Mugwort smoke has a Thujone chemical effect on the mind, somewhere between Nicotine (tobacco) and THC (pot). I have had very vivid dreams after ingesting and smoking a few pinches of crunched Mugwort leaf. Mugwort remains very magical.
I highly recommend trying Mugwort if you like Tobacco or Cannabis (pot). The side effects do not seem to be worse than either of those; however those with allergy to pollen may have an allergic reaction; additionally there is some evidence that it somehow over-stimulates the uterus in pregnant women which can lead to abortion. Testing is not conclusive yet. Further more Mugwort is completely FREE and LEGAL and not lethally toxic or poisonous (with possible exception of fetuses). To be safe, women should not use mugwort while pregnant*.
Other names for Mugwort: Artemisia Vulgaris, Witch Herb, Old Man, Old Uncle Harry, Artemis Herb, Muggons, Muggins, Mugger, Sailors Tobacco, Apple Pie, Smotherwort, Felon Herb, St Johns Plant, Cingulum Sancti, Johannis, Mother’s Wort, Maiden Wort, etc..
* Some claim it can cause miscarriages because it stimulates menstruation, so it should be avoided during pregnancy.