Giant Thistle!

Giant Thistle!

IMG_1015With thistles as big as this, we should be growing them commercially here instead of olives. This Cotton Thistle (Bot: onopordum acanthium) was nearly 2 metres high!

The thistle has been the national emblem of Scotland since the reign of Alexander III (1249–1286), usually thought of as the Cotton Thistle because of its impressive size, though it is doubtful the Cotton Thistle existed in Scotland in medieval times as it likes hot, dry summers. In the 19th century, it was introduced into America as an ornamental cultivar, but now it’s considered a major agricultural and wildland noxious weed.

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