Thistle, Scotch


This plant is a biennial, flowering in late summer and fall. The erect stem is 1 ½’ to 6’ tall, stout and well branched. The leaves are large and waved with sharp prickles on the margins. The flowers are light purple and globe shaped with lots of yellow spines at the base. Each flower can produce up to 40,000 seeds. The plant is covered with a white cottony down that comes off readily when rubbed. This white covering is responsible for the other common name cotton thistle. Scotch thistle occurs throughout the United States.

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