• Musk thistle (Carduus nutans). Bull thistle will often appear as a single specimen, whereas Canada thistle will almost always be present with several daughter plants. Photos compliments of Weeds of the West. Canada thistle does best in disturbed areas (overgrazed pastures, old fields, waste places, fence rows, along roadsides). Flowers are larger than Canada thistle, developing to 1 inch tall and wide. Canada thistle is native to Europe. It can reproduce from small stem fragments or seeds. Narrow, needle-like bracts, green foliage. Photo by Bruce Ackley of Ohio State University, via Bugwood.org. Flower heads in clusters on short stalks, bracts collectively <0.8 inches high • Scotch thistle (Onopordum acanthium). As the stem gets thicker, the wings start drying and disappearing. Flowers are produced in 3/4" diameter purple clusters at the end of the stems in June, July and August. Thistle Plant Identification . Leaves are smooth on the surface and deeply lobed with spines on the margins. It has an extensive network of creeping roots that reach deep into the ground, and it forms extensive clones. Proper identification of which choose the best management practices. Canada thistle is usually associated with low maintenance turf. Click above for the chemical control of Bull Thistle from the Cornell Weed ID site. Flowers emerge in June and are present until October. All three are identified by the bright purple flowering head, each with a different inflorescence. canada thistle stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images Seeds are dispersed by wind and birds. Look for an upcoming book from Dr. Mohler on ecological management of weeds, from Cornell University Press. Other weeds in the Aster (Asteraceae) family: long, narrow, lobed leaves; smooth leaf surface, spines on margin. Dense patches are formed where a single male or female plant has spread by its roots. If you have a disability and are having trouble accessing information on this website or need materials in an alternate format, contact web-accessibility@cornell.edu for assistance. Bull Thistle Medicinal Uses . Blessed be! How is it spreading and where? Bull Thistle (Cirsium vulgare). Canada thistle is often associated with lower maintenance sites such as pastures, fields and road-sides. The leaves of a bull thistle are large, woody and are flatted and basal rosette during their firs… Photo by Steve Dewey of Utah State University, via Bugwood.org. (When we first moved here, the place was overrun with thistles. 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 plant is beneficial for pollinators that rely on nectar. They are produced as single heads (3-4 cm (6/5-8/5”) long and 2-4 cm (4/5-8/5”) in diameter) at the end of branches and are deep pink to purple with spines covering the base of the flower. 4B. Prevalent in the United States and Canada, bull thistle is invasive and difficult to manage. The Bull Thistle gall gly (Urophora stylata) is another biocontrol agent, but it is not yet established in California and is not impactful in other states. Distaff Thistle (Carthamus lanatus). Bull Thistle (Cirsium vulgare) is a biennial that is commonly found throughout the United States and southern Canada. Seeds are 3-4mm (1/10-2/10”) long with a feathery structure to assist dispersal (pappus). The three most common invasive thistle species are: Canada thistle, bull thistle, and plumeless thistle. Very competitive with field crops and forages. Native thistle provide important habitat and food sources for native fauna. 4D. Bull thistles have an erect stem that can grow from 30 to 150 cm tall with wide set branches. Lobes on leaves are tipped with stout spines. Managing Canada Thistle Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense) is a perennial that has plagued farmers in America since European settlement, and is a Noxious Weed in Pennsylvania. Canada thistle has an extremely well developed creeping root system that can grow several feet deep. Bull thistles are biennial and only bloom every two years. Use of preemergence herbicides in combination with good sanitation will prevent seed germination. Leaves: Canada thistle has lobed leaves with spiny teeth. Minnesota has many varieties of thistle species, some are native and others are invasive. Weeds That Look Like Thistle. Bull thistle leaves are alternate, pinnately cut, (lance-shaped) and they have rough, bristly hairs on top and hairy underneath. You are trying to control than Canada thistle is the larger of the stems in June and are exponentially valuable. 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