18th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest Natural World
The lockdown series: Vapour

Artemisia Afra is an African medicinal plant called African Wormwood or Wilde als in Afrikaans or Lengana in Sesotho. It is alleged that African Wormwood can cure respiratory illnesses or at least relief accompanying symptoms. This highly aromatic plant can be used as a vapour to combat Covid-19. The plant's medicinal properties do not only provide relief from illness, but carries the hope that an indigenous medicine and a natural remedy can possibly cure Covid 19 instead of vaccines developed in high-tech laboratories. This plant was gifted to me by my painting friend Pauline Gutter. Having this plant in my possession throughout the worst of the epidemic, soothed my anticipatory anxiety as I felt somewhat prepared for the disease. But after making the vapour, I experienced a profound sense of loss and an increasing fear that I will not be able to manage the illness when I eventually get infected.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 09.2020
Date Uploaded: 11.2020
Photo Location: Bloemfontein, South Africa
Camera: Canon EOS 600D
Copyright: © Janine Allen-Spies