This section is from the book "A Manual Of Weeds", by Ada E. Georgia. Also available from Amazon: A Manual Of Weeds.
Native. Perennial. Propagates by seeds. Time of bloom: July to September. Seed-time: August to November. Range: Nebraska to Colorado, Utah, and California, northward to Montana and British Columbia. Habitat: Dry plains and foothills.
Drought does not seem to affect this plant, and when settled among less sturdy growths it robs them of most of the food and moisture available.
Stems shrubby and branching, one to ten feet tall, covered with silvery gray hair. Leaves a half-inch to but little more than an inch long, narrow, wedge-shaped, sessile, with three to five blunt teeth at the tip, which is the broadest part. Flowers sessile on crowded spikes in the axils and at the ends of the branches, the terminal spikes often dividing into large panicles. Heads only about an eighth of an inch in diameter, the florets all perfect and fertile. When ripe the heads fall entire from the spikes and are blown far and wide, particularly in winter over crusted snows, infesting many a home pasture and meadow with their perennial roots and uneatable, bitter foliage, necessitating the breaking-up and cultivation of the ground in order to rid it of their presence. It should interest an entire community to see that waste-land plants are destroyed or at least prevented from developing seed. (Fig. 347.)
Fig. 347.- Common Sage-bush (Artemisia tridentata). X 1/4.