Artemisia annua, also known as 개똥쑥, sweet wormwood, sweet annie, sweet sagewort, annual mugwort or annual wormwood (Chinese: 黄花蒿; pinyin: huánghuāhāo), is a common type of wormwood native to temperate Asia, but naturalized in many countries including scattered parts of North America.
Artemisia annua belongs to the plant family of Asteraceae and is an annual short-day plant. Its stem is erect brownish or violet brown. The plant itself is hairless and naturally grows from 30 to 100 cm tall, although in cultivation it is possible for plants to reach a height of 200 cm. The leaves of A. annua have a length of 3–5 cm and are divided by deep cuts into two or three small leaflets. The intensive aromatic scent of the leaves is characteristic.The Artemisinin content in dried leaves is in between 0% and 1.5%. New hybrids of Artemisia annua developed in Switzerland can reach a leaf artemisinin content of up to 2%.The small flowers have a diameter of 2–2.5 mm and are arranged in loose panicles. Their color is green-yellowish. The seeds are brown achenes with a diameter of only 0.6–0.8 mm. Their thousand-kernel weight (TKW) averages around 0.03 g (in comparison, wheat has a TKW of approximately 45 g).