Bull thistle might be confused with native thistles as well as more serious noxious weeds such as milk thistle, a Class A noxious weed in Washington, and Canada thistle, a Class C noxious weed that is much more difficult to control. This website uses tracking tools, including cookies. nutrition, recipes, history, uses & more! The leaves of a bull thistle are large, woody and are flatted and basal rosette during their firs… Each leaf-like structure is tipped with a long, stiff spine. 2020 Cultivation and tilling can also be effective to control bull thistle. It can also be found in hay fields, prairies and woodlands. Family: Composite or Aster Family (Compositae). They are distinguished from all other thistles by the covering of short, sharp prickles on the upper, dark green surface of the leaf blade. [15] The seeds are eaten by goldfinches, linnets and greenfinches. The inflorescence is 2.5–5 cm diameter, pink-purple, with all the florets of similar form (no division into disc and ray florets). Bull thistle is an invasive species. ♦ 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. Flora of North America, Bull or common or spear thistle, gros chardon, chardon vulgaire ou lancéolé, piqueux. Even horses will help by picking out many of the nectar-rish flowers and eating them before they go to seed. Cirsium vulgare, the spear thistle, bull thistle, or common thistle, is a species of the Asteraceae genus Cirsium, native throughout most of Europe (north to 66°N, locally 68°N), Western Asia (east to the Yenisei Valley), and northwestern Africa (Atlas Mountains). Field thistle is very similar to tall thistle (C. Most King County offices will be closed on Thursday and Friday, for the Thanksgiving holiday. Bull thistle colonizes areas where vegetation, topsoil, or overburden is removed such as road sides, pastures and ditch banks. They contain hundreds of tiny purple flowers. After spraying, wait two weeks or more to give the herbicide time to work. Please click here for more information. To support our efforts please browse our store (books with medicinal info, etc.). Mechanical control: Mowed thistles will produce new branches from basal buds but close cutting or cutting twice per season will usually prevent seed production and reduce the population over time. If there is an infested area on your property, be sure to drive around instead of through it. Bull thistle flower heads are purple and measure 3.5 to 5 cm in diameter, 2.5 to 5 cm long and are usually solitary. This plant is much different than Canada thistle. Foliage Leaves are 3-12 in. The taste is somewhat bland but the prickles MUST BE removed from the leaves before the leaves can be eaten! Livestock do not eat it, giving it an advantage over native species. Because control is not required in the county, it is on the list of Non-Regulated Noxious Weeds for King County. Pink-magenta flower heads top each stem 7. It produces seeds eaten by the American goldfinch, down from seed pods that is used by those birds for nesting material, and serves as a host plant for the Painted lady butterfly. Biological control: The bull thistle seed head gall fly (Urophora stylata) lays eggs on closed flower buds in June and July. Bull thistle can reach a height of 3 feet. The Bull Thistle is a biennial weed that reproduces by the wind blowing their seeds. 1. The bull thistle can grow up to 1.5 metres in height. It likes pastures, edges of woods, waste places, fence lines and roadsides. Mature leaves grow down the stem beyond their bases, causing the stalk to be ‘winged’ and prickly, lobed leaf-like structures. It sometimes will function as an annual, flowering in the first year. Bull thistle root can be eaten and is best used when mixed with other vegetables. Having the areas involving Bull Thistle be grazed by sheep, goats, and/or horses may also be effective, if possible. Wild food can help treat various medical conditions. Bull thistle is a weed that can grow in a wide range of environments but prefers disturbed areas. Like many other plants, the bull thistle grows a rosette in its first year and blooms in its second year of life. Identification "There are several plant genera commonly named "thistles", and the reason for this is they look very similar and bear prickles. [21] Spread is only by seed, not by root fragments as in the related creeping thistle C. arvense. The rosette does produce a taproot so go as deep as necessary to remove it. Newly emerged leaves are egg-shaped and have spines along the edge. Program offices are located at 201 S. Jackson St., Suite 600, Seattle, WA 98104.

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