Thistle, Blessed


Blessed thistle is a winter or summer annual or biennial broadleaf weed. The small to extraordinarily tall weed grows in pastures, crop fields, orchards, and roadsides, forming dense stands. Mature plants stand stiff and erect, sparsely branched, with prickly, white-marbled leaves. Pink to purple flowers grow on nearly round, shiny, long stalks. Large, green, scale-like bracts beneath the flower heads bear spines up to 2 inches long. Fruit grows in one-seeded pods. Seeds are smooth, flat, and shiny, mottled black and brown with a tufts of bristles. The plant reproduces by seed.

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