Thursday, August 07, 2008

"100" -- Thistles

35. When you see it from a distance, SPOTTED KNAPWEED makes you think of Canada thistle. But it's not. No prickles. Different genus.

36. BULL THISTLE is the big, honkin' thistles, the ones that can grow to 6' tall if you don't mow 'em back, the ones where the purple flower is bigger than a ping-pong ball, and maybe nearly as big as a large plum or a raquetball. Bull thistles have prickles on their leaves, on their stems, and even on their flowerheads.

37. CANADIAN THISTLES are the smaller thistles, but even harder to eradicate than the bigger, meaner ones. Unlike the bull thistles, Canadian thistles have prickles only on the leaves, not on the stems and flowers. If you try to dig up Canadian thistle, even the tiniest bit of root left in the ground will grow a new plant. That's why we keep finding them all over the place!

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