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Artemisia lactiflora


Artemisia lactiflora Wall. ex DC.

Family Name: Asteraceae (Compositae)
Common Name: Duck Food Vegetable, White Mugwort, 珍珠菜, 角菜, 白苞蒿


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Herbaceous Plant, Creeper
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Plant Shape Shrubby
Maximum Height 1.5 m


Native Distribution Eastern Asia
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical, Sub-Tropical / Monsoonal

Description and Ethnobotany

Others - Plant Morphology A perennial, upright and much branched shrub that can attain a height of about 1.5 m tall if allowed to grow. Most of the white mugwort plants seen in cultivation grow as a tuft consisting of several non-flowering, low lying rosettes probably due to frequent picking for food. Plants have smooth, slightly glossy, deeply cut leaves that are dark green in colour and are held via reddish purple petioles. The shape of the leaves somewhat shares some resemblence with a duck’s webbed foot. It produces off-white, milky coloured flowers that are borne on plumes.Better grown under semi-shaded and cool conditions and protected from direct tropical sunshine. Grow in well-draining, fertile soil that is constanly kept moist but not soggy. Propagation by means of seeds, stem-cuttings or division. Because seeds are not readily available, the most practical way is to stick a stem tip cutting into a pot of soil obtained from the material bought from the market or taken from an established plant. For each stem cutting, ensure there are several nodes to allow rooting. Crowded, mature clumps can also be dug up, split and planted separately. Newly propagated plants should be given shade and kept moist to take root and recuperate.Plants tend to become straggly and unproductive after repeated harvests.
Ethnobotanical Uses Edible Plant Parts : Edible Leaves
Food (Fruit or Vegetable)
Others: Leaves are cooked and eaten as a vegetable in a variety of fish dishes to mask the fishy odour. White mugwort is a bitter aromatic tonic herb. The leaves and flowering stems are used internally in traditional Chinese medicine to treat menstrual and liver disorders.

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Flowers
Landscape Uses Container Planting

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Fauna Pollination Dispersal Associated Fauna Bee-Attracting

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Moderate
Rootzone Tolerance Fertile Loamy Soils, Well-Drained Soils
Maintenance Requirements Moderate
Propagation Method Seed, Stem Cutting, Division


Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Smooth, Glossy / Shiny
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Alternate
Foliar Margin Pinnately Lobed / Pinnatifid, Serrate / Toothed
Typical Foliar Area Microphyll ( 2.25cm2 - 20.25 cm2 )
Leaf Area Index (LAI) for Green Plot Ratio 4.5 (Shrub & Groundcover - Dicot)

Non - Foliar and Storage

Stem Type & Modification Woody
Root Type Underground (Fibrous Root)

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) White
Inflorescence Type Panicle

Image Repository



Master ID 391
Species ID 1687
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 24 February 2022.