Sand sagebrush

Artemisia filifolia Torr.

Asteraceae (Sunflower Family)


A small, aromatic shrub in the Sunflower family, sand sagebrush usually grows less than 3 feet tall. Its twigs are slender, dark gray to black and covered with fine, short hair.

The leaves are slender, long and light green. The flowers occur in dense, leafy clusters. The fruit is small, dry, hard, hairless and one-seeded, and it does not open at maturity.

Sand sagebrush can grow in densities high enough to retard grass growth.

The plant has low forage value for livestock and fair value for wildlife.


Sand sagebrush is abundant in sandy soils to altitudes of 6,000 feet. It often grows in association with sand shinnery oak and small soapweed, as well as in pure stands.