Its aroma is almost an aphrodisiac.
Many of the Artemesia spp. are very aromatic; their leaves lush with terpenoids. These aromatic lipids are volatile and will relinquish their scents when leaf cells are crushed, or even under the right weather conditions.
Adding to the symphony of volatile compounds are the three isoprene rings that build the sesquiterpenoids; lactones that repel herbivory, invite the sagebrush checkerspot butterfly to lay their eggs, and gall midges to build galls to house their nymphs.
But they also attract humans that cherish the yin and yang of their leaves and scent. The silver hairs, the trichomes, on the leaf surfaces that catch the sun and dew; the aroma they impart when crushed between fingers, the scent when scattered upon a fire.
In a harsh land where sun and sand cover the earth,