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Cirsium vulgare - (Savi.)Ten.

Common Name Common Thistle, Bull thistle, Dodder, Boar Thistle, Bull Thistle
Family Asteraceae or Compositae
USDA hardiness Coming soon
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Fields, waysides, gardens and waste places to 600 metres[17].
Range Europe, including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to N. Africa and W. Asia.
Edibility Rating    (2 of 5)
Other Uses    (2 of 5)
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating    (1 of 5)
Care
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Full sun
Cirsium vulgare Common Thistle, Bull thistle, Dodder, Boar Thistle, Bull Thistle


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Cirsium_vulgare_Sturm1.jpg
Cirsium vulgare Common Thistle, Bull thistle, Dodder, Boar Thistle, Bull Thistle
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Peripitus

 

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Summary

Bloom Color: Purple. Main:Bloom Time: Early summer, Late summer, Mid summer.


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Cirsium vulgare is a BIENNIAL growing to 2 m (6ft 7in) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 2 and is not frost tender. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Bees, flies, Lepidoptera (Moths & Butterflies), beetles. The plant is self-fertile.
It is noted for attracting wildlife.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms

C. lanceolatum. non Hill. Carduus lanceolatus.

Habitats

 Meadow; Cultivated Beds;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Flowers;  Leaves;  Oil;  Root;  Seed;  Stem.
Edible Uses: Curdling agent;  Oil.

Root - cooked[183]. A taste somewhat like a Jerusalem artichoke, but not as nice[K]. A rather bland flavour, the root is best used mixed with other vegetables[9]. The root can be dried and stored for later use[257]. The root is rich in inulin, a starch that cannot be digested by humans. This starch thus passes straight through the digestive system and, in some people, ferments to produce flatulence[K]. Young flower stems - cooked and used as a vegetable[177, 183]. Young leaves can be soaked overnight in salt water and then cooked and eaten[183]. Another report says that they can be used in salads[9]. The taste is rather bland but the prickles need to be removed from the leaves before the leaves can be eaten - not only is this a rather fiddly operation but very little edible matter remains[K]. Flower buds - cooked. Used like globe artichokes[177, 183], but smaller and even more fiddly. The dried flowers are a rennet substitute for curdling plant milks[183]. Seed - occasionally eaten roasted[183].

Medicinal Uses



Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Antihaemorrhoidal;  Antirheumatic;  Poultice.

The roots have been used as a poultice and a decoction of the plant used as a poultice on sore jaws[257]. A hot infusion of the whole plant has been used as a herbal steam for treating rheumatic joints[257]. A decoction of the whole plant has been used both internally and externally to treat bleeding piles[257].

Other Uses

Oil;  Paper;  Tinder.

A fibre obtained from the inner bark is used in making paper. The fibre is about 0.9mm long[189]. The stems are harvested in late summer, the leaves removed and the stems steamed until the fibres can be stripped off. The fibres are cooked with lye for two hours and then put in a ball mill for 3 hours. The resulting paper is a light brown tan[189]. The seed of all species of thistles yields a good oil by expression[4]. No details of potential yields etc are given[K]. The down makes an excellent tinder that is easily lit by a spark from a flint[212].

Cultivation details

The common thistle is a pernicious weed that spreads freely by means of its seed which can be dispersed by the wind over a large area. The seedlings are capable of establishing themselves in grassland. This plant should not be encouraged, and if growing on your land should be cut down before it sets seed. What better way of discouraging it is there than eating it? An easily grown plant, succeeding in any ordinary garden soil in a sunny position[200]. Special Features:North American native, Fragrant foliage.

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Propagation

Seed - sow early spring or autumn in situ. Germination usually takes place within 2 - 8 weeks at 20°c[164]. A pernicious weed, it really needs no encouragement from us.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Black thistle, Bull thistle, Bur thistle, Cardo de toro, Cardo negro, Pareira brava, Spear thistle, Common thistle, Scots, Scottish, or Scotch thistle,

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Afghanistan, Africa, Argentina, Asia, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, Chile, Europe, France, Greece, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lord Howe Island, Mediterranean, New Zealand, North Africa, North America, Pakistan, Paraguay, Portugal, Russia, South America, Spain, Tasmania, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uruguay, USA.

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Naturalised in North America, Africa, and Australia and is an invasive weed in some areas.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed.

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Cirsium acaulonStemless Thistle01
Cirsium amplexifoliumDakiba-Hime-Azami10
Cirsium arvenseCreeping Thistle, Canada thistle22
Cirsium brevicaule 10
Cirsium brevistylumIndian Thistle, Clustered thistle30
Cirsium buergeri 10
Cirsium chinense 10
Cirsium coreanum 10
Cirsium dipsacolepis 10
Cirsium eatoniEaton's Thistle11
Cirsium eduleEdible Thistle30
Cirsium eriophorumWooly Thistle20
Cirsium foliosumElk thistle30
Cirsium hookerianumWhite Thistle20
Cirsium japonicumNo-Azami, Japanese thistle22
Cirsium kamtschaticumKamchatka thistle10
Cirsium lepskyle 10
Cirsium lineare 10
Cirsium maackii 10
Cirsium maritimum 10
Cirsium nipponicum 11
Cirsium occidentaleCobwebby Thistle, Snowy thistle, Compact cobwebby thistle20
Cirsium ochrocentrumYellow Spined Thistle22
Cirsium oleraceumCabbage Thistle20
Cirsium oligophyllum 20
Cirsium pallidumPale Thistle11
Cirsium palustreMarsh Thistle20
Cirsium pectinellum 10
Cirsium pendulum 10
Cirsium purpuratum 10
12

 

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Expert comment

Author

(Savi.)Ten.

Botanical References

17200

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

sue mcandrew   Fri Aug 8 2008

suemcandrew@btinternet.com Please can anyone assist me, my daughter trod on thistles with bare feet, she has very soft soles of her feet. She now has raised wounds on her feet, this happend on 28th July, and still sore today, 8th Aug 08. Is this a rare occurance, can I apply anything to her foot to ease the discomfort ? Thank you.

Robert Gergulics   Sat Apr 11 2009

Photos Here. Www.photorobg.com

www.photorobg.com

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Subject : Cirsium vulgare  
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