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Crossostephium chinense


Crossostephium chinense (L.) Makino

Family Name: Asteraceae (Compositae)
Synonyms: Tanacetum chinense, Chrysanthemum artemisioides, Crossostephium artemisioides, Artemisia judaica, Artemisia chinensis
Common Name: Chinese Wormwood, 香菊, 芙蓉菊


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 Shrub
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Maximum Height 0.3 m


Native Distribution Taiwan, S. China, Philippines, Ryuku Islands (Japan)
Native Habitat Terrestrial (Coastal Forest)

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form Woody shrub that is highly branched with erect branches. 
Foliage Leaves are fleshy, spathulate or oblanceolate, and have a velvety texture on both sides. They are spirally arranged and sessile (lacking a definitive petiole). Leaves are typically entire or trilobate, but occasionally bilobate or dissected into more than 3 lobes. 
Stems Woody stem with light brown bark. Leaves are absent on the lower portion of the stem near the base, but are densely clustered at the branch tips. 
Flowers Compound flower resembles the yellow center of a Daisy. Each is composed of numerous disk florets and some ray florets. Inflorescence is a raceme with 1 major axis directly connected to short-stalked compound flowers. In Java, flowering occurs during most parts of the year. 
Fruit Fruits are small and egg-shaped or oblong (1.5 mm long). Fruit is classified as an achene, a dry, indehiscent fruit that usually contains a single seed. In the tropics, fruits are rarely produced. 
Habitat Located on limestone formations, raised coral reefs or areas along the coast, such as coastal forests. 
Cultivation Plant in alkaline soil with good drainage, preferably in a pot. Allow the soil to dry somewhat before re-watering. This species is usually not susceptible to pests. 
Etymology The genus name "Crossostephium" is derived from 2 Greek words, "krossoi" which means tassels and "stephos" which means crown. The reference is to a crown-like appendage found on the fruits of some species in this genus. The species epithet "chinense" means that this species is from China.
Ethnobotanical Uses Food (Herb or Spice)
Others: This species contains an inhibitor of the enzyme alpha-glucosidase which might be used to treat diabetes (Wu et al. 2009). Other compounds that likely have a medicinal effect are taraxerol, taraverone and taraxeryl acetate which occur throughout the plant body. Taraxerol was effective against inflammation and cancer-causing compounds in mice. In Indochina, tumors are treated by placing dried, crushed leaves on them. In Taiwanese traditional medicine, this species is used to treat cough, flu and infections of the windpipe, as well as cases of poisoning and arthritic pain. In Vietnamese and Chinese traditional medicine, it is also used to treat cough, as well as menstrual disorders.

Landscaping Features

Landscaping This shrub has attractive silvery leaves. Dense clusters of trilobate leaves at the branch tips produce a decorative, flower-like pattern. It would blend in well with other silver-coloured plants. Alternatively, it provides contrast when located next to green plants. It may also be used as a border plant. 
Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Foliage
Landscape Uses General, Flowerbed / Border, Container Planting, Coastal
Thematic Landscaping Silver Garden

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Moderate
Rootzone Tolerance Fertile Loamy Soils, Well-Drained Soils, Saline Soils / Salt Spray, Disease / Pest Resistant
Maintenance Requirements Low
Diseases Usually no problems.
Propagation Method Seed, Stem Cutting
Propagation Method Remarks Propagate by seed or softwood cuttings. In the tropics, it may be difficult to obtain seed. 


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Silver / Grey
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Velvety / Furry / Tomentose
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Spiral
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Spathulate)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Entire, Palmately Lobed
Foliar Apex - Tip Rounded
Foliar Base Cuneate
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

Bark Colour(s) Light brown
Stem Type & Modification Woody
Root Type Underground (Tap Root)

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower Colour(s) Yellow / Golden
Flower Symmetry Radial
Inflorescence Type Raceme
Flowering Period Free-Flowering
Flowering Habit Polycarpic

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Fruit Classification Simple Fruit
Fruit Type Indehiscent Dry Fruit , Achene

Image Repository



Master ID 594
Species ID 1889
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: 15 February 2022.