But that’s where the resemblance ends. Canada thistle is also prolific in seed production at 700 seeds per stem. • Musk thistle (Carduus nutans). All biennial thistles considered noxious are native to Europe or Eurasia, and were introduced into North America as seed contaminants. Exotic invasive Bull Thistle (Cirsium vulgare) Long silky hairs on Silver Plume Silver Plume blooms in September Virtually no hairs on Johnson grass SF 2016 (Cirsium discolor) Native Tall Thistle (Cirsium altissimum) Native Carolina Thistle (Cirsium carolinianum) Exotic invasive Canada Thistle (Cirsium arvense) Perennial. Report it! They are best early in the season, before they are in full bloom. ), Thistle grows just about everywhere, as you can see from the following USDA range maps for Canada thistle and bull thistle. How is it spreading and where? Two fluid ounces of such a decoction may be taken every two or three hours. The problem is …. "�w=7A�3w:�7��o��q�G�� Oܯ�=9'��9�N�鈑���q��;�0O� v����N��Ϧ �덞V�*��P�X�5!�#}� ~��et���5:�i��Sd��hX�L5 ��-�34��T�2r�Xf���O�2G&�A=7��lT]�`�i2Vʞ�ůO�%ZJ/!ӯ�nY�"��т�k�9��;bVٶ���� t�[Qr�n“ TVD\� Q' �#�A��NN. In year two,  they shoot up a large flower stalk. It is also commonly known as Canada thistle and field thistle.. Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) is also known as common thistle or spear thistle. In The Wild Wisdom of Weeds, thistle is promoted as a liver tonic, alkalizing food and general tonic for many conditions. Herbivores avoid thistles because of the prickles. wide). Roots are dug in fall from first year plants (those with no flower stalk), or during the season as the plants need to be cleared from an area. Bull thistle seedling. Canada thistle develops seeds sparingly and may produce 1,000 to 1,500 seeds per flowering shoot. Disturbance of the soil during manual control may cause the germination of any thistle seeds in the soil, so the area should be monitored to control any new seedlings. Flowers are pink, bristly, 1/2 inch long and wide. Seedlings can pop up anywhere, as only a single seed or a remnant of root is necessary to propagate a whole new plant. Thistle is the common name of a group of flowering plants characterised by leaves with sharp prickles on the margins, mostly in the family Asteraceae.Prickles can also occur all over the plant – on the stem and on the flat parts of the leaves. All three are identified by the bright purple flowering head, each with a different inflorescence. The Canada thistle commonly grows in clumps of plants, because it will spread by runners. Other: Canada thistle is an aggressive weed and is classified as a nox-ious weed throughout the Great Plains. to the rhizomatous root system of Canada thistle. The plant is beneficial for pollinators that rely on nectar. The first year they start out as low basal rosettes close to the ground. Measure whether bracts We get many European skippers visiting our plants. Plants should be dug, taking care to remove as much of the root system as possible. Description. • Plumeless thistle (Carduus acanthoides). It has spiny-winged stems, and its flowers are classic onion-shaped thistle flowers. Typical leaf length is 3-4″ inches, although they may reach up to 8″ long and 1″ wide. Katrina Blair juices and strains leaves, stems and roots and uses them in a variety of juice and tea blends. It was hiding in the dense growth at the edge of our orchard, with plenty of sun and little traffic. Thistles, in general, get a bad rap whenever the word “thistle” is men oned. Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense) is also known as creeping thistle, small-flowered thistle, perennial thistle and green thistle. Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. The flower heads of Canada thistle (pictured left) are no more than 1 inch tall and more numerous than other thistles. Thayer describes peeling off outer layers to reveal the heart (and dismisses it as too much work). The plant is beneficial for pollinators that rely on nectar. Flowers are produced in 3/4" diameter purple clusters at the end of the stems in June, July and August. He describes them and being tender, juicy and delicious. General: A tall, erect, spiny perennial plant that grows to 120 cm (4') tall. Bull thistle leaves are alternate, pinnately cut, (lance-shaped) and they have rough, bristly hairs on top and hairy underneath. d . Too much nitrogen can make the conditions that favor thistles worse. To get rid of Canada thistles, it's best to catch them when they are young and small. Answer: Both thistles and nettles have been called the devil’s plant or devil’s vegetable because of their thorns, and both are considered prickly weeds, although they’re often used medicinally. The flowering stalks also can be cleaned and eaten. Flower heads in clusters on short stalks, bracts collectively <0.8 inches high • Scotch thistle (Onopordum acanthium). Plants often have a single, heavily branched stem armed with spiny wings between the leaves. Foliage is hairy, lobed with prickles, and has a dark bluish-green color.. x��=�n$�����Xel�x3iH�-�lx��av���x�ֺ���/o�dV1����Re�F�&k���p������xߜ��ޠ�O�h���������>��aû���`� xh�8#���7��/��%~ѝ~�W�����)���G�?�����{�?��ͧ��������Q��J���5c'�T� �O���������oo.^)$���z�*�a��:���i ~q/~�و D#����@㙰QM��p�������h����Du�w��[9n�GH�PO ��d�#L�Hx�0�&��,#al�)��T.��4pLljtOO��ё����z�j�R�$6M5N��|�������Ӟ�?�� ���?���/{��n��:���j��? Canada thistle Bull thistle Indian thistle Bull thistle vs native thistle: More than 140 thistle species are indigenous to North America. Seen it? By the time flowers appear, the stalks are hollow and stringy. Deionized sulfur helps to bring the iron/manganese ratio back into balance. I was underwhelmed. This publication is designed to determine whether an unknown thistle is exotic or native; if exotic, the publication will help you determine it to species. (Its spines are quite wicked. The painted lady is also known as the thistle butterfly. Leaves are smooth on the surface and deeply lobed with spines on the margins. Still, if I'm in a pinch, at least I know they are safe to eat. Goldfinches also use thistledown to line their nests. The thistles don’t taste bad. The plants you are most likely to confuse Canada thistle with are other thistles. Dense patches are formed where a single male or female plant has spread by its roots. Canada thistle is a perennial that spreads by seed and an underground system of vertical and horizontal roots. I didn’t notice it getting quite so large until I walked by in shorts… Thistle Root. It has spiny-winged stems, and its flowers are classic onion-shaped thistle flowers. Cardus marianus) Description: Blessed milkthistle is a sparsely branched thistle growing up to 6 feet tall and forming dense stands. Properties and Uses: The roots are slightly demulcent, with stimulating and mildly astringent properties. Very competitive with field crops and forages. An infusion is said to expedite labor very effectually, when the nervous system has become fatigued-also anticipating after-pains and flooding. The problem is …. An aggressive, spreading root system. Narrow, needle-like bracts, green foliage. Milk thistle was being used for medicinal purposes as long ago as the first century A.D. Seeds. Bull thistles (Cirsium vulgare) are exactly that – bullish. The dark green leaves are up to 12 in (31 cm) long, rough-textured, hairy, and bear long spines on their margins. Wet springs also tend to bring more seeds out of dormancy. (Barbara Pleasant recommends the same thing in The Gardener's Weed Book – other than the bare-handed pulling.). Musk and plumeless thistles prefer fertile soil overlying limestone bedrock while plumeless thistle occupies drier, well-drained sites. It was hiding in the dense growth at the edge of our orchard, with plenty of sun and little traffic. The bull thistle plant was used by early humans as a warm medicinal tea. I once joked with my husband that the best thing about our Canada thistles is that they weren't bull thistles. wide) help to differentiate it from Canada thistle, which has less-spiny stems and smaller flower heads (up to 3/4 in. Their deep tap roots help break up compacted soils. Anything that will improve soil structure and nutrient availability will improve the odds of other plants versus the thistles, so cover crops like buckwheat would definitely fall into that category. Canada thistle has an extremely well developed creeping root system that can grow several feet deep. Tilling Canada thistle will spread the plants by root pieces, but repeated tilling of bull thistle … Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) has lobed leaves with sword-shaped sections, and scary spines at the tips. Bull thistles (Cirsium vulgare) are exactly that – bullish. When the soil is loose, such as after a rain, it's fairly easy to pull them and get a long section of root, even barehanded. You can also subscribe without commenting. I will do a soil test and see where we can make some changes there. Canada thistle blossoms are a light pink-purple, with many blossoms per plant. The seeds are eaten by the American Goldfinch and the Clay-colored Sparrow. Figure 1. Flowers develop at the top of the plant from July through September. (When we first moved here, the place was overrun with thistles. For bull thistles, I usually use a fork and heavy gloves, unless I can catch them small and get under the rosette. Diane Murray. Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) is a biennial, herbaceous, taprooted plant up to 6 ft (1.8 m) tall.Plants often have a single, heavily branched stem armed with spiny wings between the leaves. To me it’s just a lot of work to get to the edible bits. Control of Canada Thistle in CRP and Other Noncrop Acreage • FNR-436-W. Pull thistles before they bloom so their seeds don't spread in the wind. I've nibbled Canada thistle roots while weeding in the garden. stream Many birds are found of thistle seeds, especially American goldfinches. <>/PageLabels 300 0 R>> Control of Canada Thistle in CRP and Other Noncrop Acreage • FNR-436-W. Canada thistle invades natural areas such as prairies, savannas, open areas in forests, and dunes if some degree of disturbance already exists. Blessed be! The different species are all edible and have similar uses. The leaves themselves have jagged edges tipped by spines, and are smooth on top but often somewhat hair underneath. Landowners and homeowners realize this plant was a serious problem and needed to be controlled. The dark green leaves are up to 12 in (31 cm) long, rough-textured, hairy, and bear long spines on their margins. (When we first moved here, the place was overrun with thistles. Green metallic bees and other Halictid bees may collect pollen from the flowers, but they are non-pollinating. Mature growth is 2-6′ tall. (I tried this – very strange, mildly sweet, not at all like gum.). 3 0 obj Bull Thistle vs. Canada Thistle: Bull thistle’s spiny-winged stems and large globe-shaped flower heads (up to 2 in. The Wild Wisdom of Weeds mentions pulling the pink tops of the flowers and chewing them like gum. May dominate forest clear cuts and reduce growth of tree seedlings. The photo below was taken when one of our thistle patches was heavy with morning dew. I had read about buckwheat being good to control thistles, so I may try that also…. Think managed rotational grazing in pastures instead of simply keeping the herd in one large area. Canada thistle has purple or white flowers, with stalkless, spiny, dark-green leaves, growing to 0.3-2 metres in height at maturity. Similar weeds. Although similar in appearance, they have significantly different growth habits. Status Milk thistle has become particularly problematic in California where it has been listed as an invasive species of weed. The standard English name in its native area is creeping thistle. Biennial thistles, such as musk (Carduus nutans L.), plumeless (Carduus acanthoides L.) and bull thistle [Cirsium vulgare (Savi) Tenore], are not as difficult to control as the perennial thistle species, but spread rapidly and can become severe problems in some areas. <> Canada thistle is diecious, which means male and female flowers occur on separate plants. Welcome to the Weekly Weeder series. Bull thistle will often appear as a single specimen, whereas Canada thistle will almost always be present with several daughter plants. - Emeraldology, 6 Ways to Get the Musty Smell Out of Clothes and Towels. While Canada thistle (not surprisingly) grows throughout much of Canada, this weed also thrives in most of the U.S., as well as Europe and Asia. Proper identification ♦ Control Practices for Canada Thistle ♦ Bull and Musk (Biennial) Thistle Control in Perennial Grass Crops ♦ Species assessment spiny plumbless thistle ♦ Species assessment musk thistle ♦ Species assessment Canada thistle ♦ Species assessment bull thistle ♦ Native vs Invasive Thistles. Canada thistles (Cirsium arvense) are perennials, growing back each year from their roots. Today's featured weed is the thistle, i.e. 2 0 obj Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) is also a nonnative, but is less problematic. Katrina Blair calls them “essential for human survival”. Canada thistle was introduced from Europe and is one of the most feared weeds in the United States. Canada thistle is diecious, which means male and female flowers occur on separate plants. Bull thistle is easier to control manually than Canada thistle. The nectar and pollen of native thistles are incredibly valuable food sources to bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) has lobed leaves with sword-shaped sections, and scary spines at the tips. Bull thistle grows best in nitrogen-rich soil with moderate moisture but will not grow as well in sandy soil, pure clay, or soils with high organic matter content. They are in rosette stage in the first year and flower and set seeds in the second year. Unlike other thistles, the Canada thistle has a deep and wide-spreading root system. Stems may branch near the top. Leaves are … It can occur in wet areas where water levels fluctuate (along stream banks and ditches). Thank you, Dave. The summer and fall bloom time of thistles means that goldfinches raise their young later than most birds. It is also commonly known as Canada thistle and field thistle.. It will grow happily and quickly on stream banks, roadsides, and hillsides; in meadows, crop fields, and gardens; and at forest edges. Thistle blossoms are much loved by butterflies and other pollinators. I knew one gentleman to use a syrup of this root in long-standing coughs, where the expectoration was free and the lungs feeble; and he also used a wine tincture in mild leucorrhea and prolapsus. As a general control, mowing when the plants are in bloom catches them without reserves (all their energy is in the flowers) and knocks back the population. Your email address will not be published. Flowers are pink, bristly, 1/2 inch long and wide. Canada and bull thistle are some of the varieties of thistle you may find in your lawn. Repeated mowings when the plant has tight flower buds can help decrease the number of plants. If preemergence control fails, spray with Roundup or 2,4-D on actively growing plants prior to flower bud emergence. It is a biennial that reproduces by seed. Question: Is a thistle the same as a nettle, and do they both sting? Bull thistle flower head. Although similar in appearance, they have significantly different growth habits. This thistle doesn't have the milky striping, and its leaves are hairier than Italian or milk thistle. Comparatively, Canada thistle is a perennial that reproduces through underground rhizomes and wind-blown seeds. Name: Canada thistle, Cirsium arvense (L.) Scop., Other Names: chardon des champs, Canadian thistle, Creeping thistle, Field thistle, chardon du Canada Family: Composite or Aster Family (Compositae) General Description: Perennial, reproducing by seed and by horizontal roots which produce new shoots, often forming dense patches. The Nlaka’pamux (Thompson) Indians, as one example, cooked and ate the fresh, peeled roots and also dried and stored them for later use. Plants can reach 1-3 feet high. Facts about Thistle. Not common in MO. The flower nectar also attracts butterflies (especially swallowtails), skippers, and bee flies. Canada thistle (C. arvense [L.] Scop.) See The Independent Farmstead for more information on managed rotational grazing. Left: Bull thistle, page 5 photo by Starr Environmental, bugwood.org Right: Flodman’s thistle, page 12 photo by M. Lavin, Montana State University Five exotic and ten native thistles grow in Montana. Plants may have one or more flowers per stem. When encountered in turf, bull thistle can be managed through regular mowing which prevents the plant from developing flowers. Bull Thistle has a two year life span. planting. Love your blog. The rosettes can get up to 4′ across. Bull thistle is the larger of the two common thistles of Whatcom County, the other being Canada thistle. Bull thistle is identified by its more robust form and the non-rhizomatous root system. As a relative of the artichoke, the flower buds are also edible. The dead stems remain standing into the following winter. Very competitive with field crops and forages. A beginners guide to wild foods. Wildflowers Of WisconsinWild… Filed Under: Herbalism, Wildcrafting Tagged With: bull thistle, Canada thistle, Cirsium arvense, Cirsium vulgare, medicinal herbs, thistle, weeds, weekly weeder, Wildcrafting, Great article! Sure, it has attractive purple blooms, but don’t be fooled. The leaves are loped, with each ending in a sharp spine. Their perfume is quite beautiful. Plants bloom in summer with large, reddish purple flower heads that resemble an old time shave cream brush. No true thistles are known to be toxic, and they are fairly easy to identify. Native Americans used to chew on the petals like chewing gum. Even then, their tap roots hold quite tightly. Canada thistle is a perennial that spreads by seed and an underground system of vertical and horizontal roots. Canada thistles like soil with high iron, low calcium and poor organic matter. plants of the genus Cirsium. Flower heads in clusters on short stalks, bracts collectively <0.8 inches high • Scotch thistle (Onopordum acanthium). An aggressive perennial with a vigorous root system that continually produces new shoots, invading new areas and outcompeting other vegetation types. Bull Thistle (Cirsium vulgare) is a biennial that is commonly found throughout the United States and southern Canada.This weed typically grows in rich, moist … Range: Europe, including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to N. Africa and W. Asia. For more long term control, look at the soil itself. If you are going to mow regularly, though, this may help draw down the plant’s root resources. May 6, 2017 By Laurie Neverman 4 Comments This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission. It can invade sedge meadows and wet prairies from nearby disturbed sites. Though I don’t think I’ll be eating my thistles. Bull thistles are biennials. Similar plants: Stems of Canada thistle are not spiny in contrast to bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) and nodding thistle (Carduus nutans). The stems of Canada thistle lack the conspicuous spiny wings found on bull thistle (C. vulgare) Never Buy Bread Again has over twenty bread recipes for all occasions, plus troubleshooting for common baking problems and tips on how to store your bread. Through the app or online. The standard English name in its native area is creeping thistle. Canada thistle is more difficult to control manually because of its creeping root system. In The Forager's Harvest, Samuel Thayer goes into some detail about how thistles were one of the first wild foods he foraged, and how he harvests the center spine of the leaves by peeling off the surrounding spiny leaf material, leaving a stalk like a celery stick. The bull thistle generally grows in pastures, gardens, along trails and roadsides, and in waste areas. Plants should be dug, taking care to remove as much of the root system as possible. Some thistles, including Bull Thistle, is edible and can be roasted. Similar plants: Stems of Canada thistle are not spiny in contrast to bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) and nodding thistle (Carduus nutans). Small stands of bull thistle can be controlled through hand removal. Cirsium arvense is a perennial species of flowering plant in the family Asteraceae, native throughout Europe and western Asia, northern Africa and widely introduced elsewhere. The caterpillars of the butterfly Vanessa cardui (Painted Lady) feed on the foliage. endobj This plant often grows as a biennial. They taste a bit like iceberg lettuce (plus, no thorns). Leaves are hairy on top and bottom, with a more silvery tone on the underside. Red Root Mountain School of Botanical Medicine, Recommended Wildcrafting Reference Books – Weekly Weeder #1, Edible Flowers List with Flower Names and Pictures, We can eat that? Cirsium arvense is a perennial species of flowering plant in the family Asteraceae, native throughout Europe and western Asia, northern Africa and widely introduced elsewhere. Contrary to the name, Canada thistle did not come into the U.S. from our northern neighbor, but rather was introduced in the 17th century from the Mediterranean region and southeast Europe. As mentioned earlier, they thrive in disturbed soils.) Canada thistle is native to Europe. ), long-horned bees (Melissodes spp. %PDF-1.5 ), and cuckoo bees (Epeolus spp.). Proper identification of which choose the best management practices. We allow them to hang out in the wild areas of the yard, and don't panic when they show up in “barefoot zones”. (Adapted from https://plants.usda.gov/.). Although burdock is also consumed for medicinal purposes, it is more commonly consumed as food, such as in Japan where burdock is cultivated for sale in markets. Identification of thistles can be challenging. There are about 200 species of thistles, including Canada Thistle, Bull Thistle, Milk Thistle, and more. Solitary 1 to 2 inch purple flowers bloom at the end of each branch. Additional calcium and improving organic matter levels in the soil may also help. Canada thistle can be used medicinally. 4 0 obj The spines, while pokey, are not nearly as sharp as bull thistle spines. It can invade sedge meadows and wet prairies from nearby disturbed sites. Biennial thistles spread only by seed (achenes) that are produced in great number by all the noxious species, ra… Canada thistle, page 6, for an example of densely clustered flowers on short stalks and musk thistle, page 7, for an example of solitary flowers on ... needle-like (e.g. this post feels incomplete to me, but I hope it helps. In the interest of science, I found a bull thistle leaf, peeled it and ate it on the spot. Not common in MO. The three most common invasive thistle species are: Canada thistle, bull thistle, and plumeless thistle. The seeds of this weed are short-lived on the soils surface but can lay dormant in the soil for many years. The nectar and pollen of the flowers (of the bull thistle) attract many kinds of long-tongued bees, including bumblebees, leaf-cutting bees (Megachile spp. Their roots are very brittle and break off easily (which allows them to regrow), but with frequent cultivation and mulching they are readily brought under control. Bull thistle, a biennial, is often confused with Canada thistle but can be distinguished by the profuse hairs present on the upper leaf surface. Figure 1. Lobes on leaves are tipped with stout spines. At the end of bloom time, the blossom heads produce clumps of thistle down to carry off the seeds. This species is dioecious Name: Bull thistle, Cirsium vulgare (Savi) Tenore., Other Names: CIRVU, chardon vulgaire, Spear thistle, cirse vulgaire, pet-d'âne, piqueux Family: Composite or Aster Family (Compositae) General Description: Biennial, reproducing only by seed. • Plumeless thistle (Carduus acanthoides). Mammalian herbivores don't eat the Bull Thistle because it is heavily armed with spines. Canada thistle grows in dense patches and reduces the vigor and establishment of grassland plantings and riparian buffers that are planted to improve wildlife habitat. What you are doing is an inspiration to me! Seeds are dispersed by wind and birds. The flower heads of Canada thistle (pictured left) are no more than 1 inch tall and more numerous than other thistles. Canada thistle has been on the Noxious Weed List since 1873. Seeds are viable in the soil for up to 20 years. The roots were also used as an aid to digestion, and to treat stomach cramps. Bull Thistle (Cirsium vulgare) is a biennial that is commonly found throughout the United States and southern Canada.This weed typically grows in rich, moist … Mowing is recommended for bull thistle, but it spurs Canada thistle to develop new shoots from its root system. I have a one acre pasture that I would like to cultivate, but the thistles are thick. musk thistle) is important for identification. Many insects feed on the leaves, stems, flowers and seeds, while some songbirds also feed on thistle seeds. Several native thistles could also be confused for Canada thistle. Exotic invasive Bull Thistle (Cirsium vulgare) Long silky hairs on Silver Plume Silver Plume blooms in September Virtually no hairs on Johnson grass SF 2016 (Cirsium discolor) Native Tall Thistle (Cirsium altissimum) Native Carolina Thistle (Cirsium carolinianum) Exotic invasive Canada Thistle (Cirsium arvense) Perennial. Reproduction . Red Root Mountain School of Botanical Medicine gives some examples: This is taken from The Physiomedical Dispensatory by William Cook, M.D., 1869 Medical Herbalism…. <> This plant often grows as a biennial. Canada thistle does best in disturbed areas (overgrazed pastures, old fields, waste places, fence rows, along roadsides). The Bull Thistle is a biennial weed that reproduces by the wind blowing their seeds. Using sound judgment to be more self-reliant. (See photos below and at top of post.) It was introduced to North America in the 1600s, probably in agricultural seed shipments and is now widespread throughout the United States and Canada. Canada thistle (aka creeping thistle) is a determined weed if ever there was one. Your email address will not be published. Canada thistle is also prolific in seed production at 700 seeds per stem. • Bull Thistle (Cirsium vulgare). The roots, too, are edible, and Thayer says “better than burdock“. Flowers are larger than Canada thistle, developing to 1 inch tall and wide. Erect foliage and flower stems are formed the second year. Canada thistle can reproduce by seed and has male and female flowers on separate plants. An aggressive, spreading root system. Posts: 2. posted 7 years ago. endobj Range and Identification of Canada Thistle and Bull Thistle, « 10 Home Remedies for Headaches – Headache Relief That Works, Natural Weed Control – Weed Killers and Non-Toxic Weed Control Options ». Broad triangular bracts point outward or down, heads often nodding. Bull thistle is a biennial that forms a rosette the first year. Although viewed as a noxious weed in many areas, thistles are one of early succession plants featured in The Wild Wisdom of Weeds. Common in overgrazed pastures where it may form dense stands that reduce productivity and stocking levels. Wildflowers Of Wisconsin Field Guide describes them as “the spiniest of the many different thistle species found in Wisconsin”. Canada Thistle vs. Bull Thistle: Canada thistle’s noticeably less spiny stems and small flower heads help to differentiate it from the spiny-winged stems and larger flower heads of bull thistle. Simply grab at the very base of the plant, where it is less spiny, or even just below the soil line. Or you can throw the thistle into a barrel of water, let it rot, then water things with that--this can help spread around the minerals the thistle is pulling up, help it do its job, while also killing the thistle plants.