Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health. Appearance Carduus nutans is an herbaceous, biennial plant that grows to 6 ft. (1.8 m) tall. The stem has very spiny wings. Tasmania Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water, and Environment (Australia). These native thistles are shorter and smaller than Musk thistle with more delicate stems and rosettes. Carduus nutans, with the common names musk thistle, nodding thistle, and nodding plumeless thistle, is a biennial herb in the Asteraceae—sunflower family. Musk thistle is also known as nodding thistle and nodding plumeless thistle. Musk thistle (Carduus nutans) is easily distinguished from other thistles in the state by its silvery leaf margins, and absence of hairs or fuzz and large, nodding flower heads. musk thistle) is important for identification. Identify the musk thistle (Carduus nutans), which is commonly found invading pastures, fields and meadows, by its hairless, spiny and alternately arranged leaves that have spiky and silvery edges. Many insects feed on the leaves, stems, flowers and seeds, while some songbirds also feed on thistle seeds. Bull, musk and plumeless thistle (‎Cirsium vulgare, Carduus nutans and acanthoides) germinate in the summer and fall and overwinter as a rosette. Musk and plumeless thistles hybridize and are very similar in … YouTube; Ag PhD: Information for Agriculture. The problem is ….This prickly weed reduces the quality of grazing land. Conservation Services Division. Foliage Leaves are green and lanceolate to oblong-lanceolate. Musk Thistle a.k.a. Musk thistle (Carduus nutans) is a biennial herbaceous plant, between one to seven feet tall. Carduus nutans - Asteraceae Family - Biennial. Musk thistle is a non-native biennial forb but can behave occasionally as an annual. Report it! HABITAT IN THE UNITED STATES Musk thistle grows from sea level to about 8,000 ft elevation, in neutral to acidic soils. GRIN-Global. ARS. New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (Australia). A species profile for Musk Thistle. National Genetic Resources Program. For more information about musk thistle, please visit the website of the Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board (external link). Goldfinches feed on several thistle species, and bees utilize the plants to make an especially sweet honey. Musk thistle often grows in excess of 6 feet tall, has very large flowers that tend to droop, and the flower has … Through the app or online. Accidental, possibly through ballast water (, Crowds out native species and forage for livestock (. Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board. USDA. The single or clustered purple flowers, 1.5-2” across, are borne at the ends of … Musk thistle is found throughout the U.S. except for Maine, Vermont, Florida, Alaska and Hawaii. It has spread quickly throughout much of the Midwest, but is not yet common in Ohio. Alberta Invasive Species Council (Canada). Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. Maps can be downloaded and shared. Measure whether bracts collectively are greater than or less than 0.8 inches high, referring to the white bracket in Figure 2 for the length to measure. :1 noxious weed throughout Kansas in 1963. Musk thistle produces a basal rosette during the first year. ]), also non-native in the US. Alaska Center for Conservation Science. National Invasive Species Information Center, Early Detection & Distribution Mapping System (EDDMapS) - Musk Thistle, Fact Sheet: Nodding Thistle (Jan 2014) (PDF | 700 KB), Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council Invasive Plant Manual - Musk Thistle, Alaska Exotic Plants Information Clearinghouse (AKEPIC): Species Biography - Musk Thistle and Related Thistle Species (Feb 7, 2011) (PDF | 170 KB), Invasive Plant Atlas of the United States - Musk Thistle, PLANTS Database - Nodding Plumeless Thistle, Field Guide: Invasive - Musk Thistle (Nodding Thistle), Invasive Plants in Pennsylvania: Musk Thistle (PDF | 254 KB), Natural Resources Series: Range - Musk Thistle. Program offices are located at 201 S. Jackson St., Suite 600, Seattle, WA 98104. Musk thistle is also referred to as nodding thistle. Or, to display all related content view all resources for Musk Thistle. Nodding terminal compound pink-purple flowers May to August. and triangular (e.g. Height to 10 ft.; rosette first year. Carduus species may hybridize with each other. Rosette formed first year; flowering stem el… However, musk thistle can be distinguished from other thistles by its large, disk-shaped, apical flower heads. Seen it? The plant forms basal rosettes during its first year, which have deeply lobed leaves that are up to 10 inches long and 4 inches wide, … https://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/plants/forb/carnut/all.html Musk thistle is primarily a biennial or winter annual species. Wheeler's thistle Look-alike native plants: Wheeler’s thistle (Cirsium wheeleri) with purple looks similar to Musk thistle. Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare; non-native) has prickly winged stems and leaves have prickly hair above, with white wooly hair below. It invades open natural areas such as meadows, prairies, and grassy balds. Information. Noxious Weed Program. Musk thistle produces many heads. Musk thistle can grow up to 7 feet tall and flowers with 50 to 100 reddish-purple blooms that are each 2 to 3 inches wide. Similar species: Native marsh thistle (Cirsium muticum) has non-spiny stems and flower heads. Also called nodding thistle. Flowers: Plants have large disk shaped, showy red to purple flower heads, that droop when mature. Musk thistle generally is not a prob­ lem in cultivated cropland, but may germinate and develop in fallow fields or after winter wheat is planted in the fall. To contact staff, see the Noxious Weed Control Program Directory, send an email, or call 206-477-WEED (206-477-9333). Musk Thistle. Bull thistle is erect, 2 to 5 feet tall with many spreading branches, spiny wings from leaves. Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. It spreads rapidly in areas subjected to frequent natural Identify the musk thistle (Carduus nutans), which is commonly found invading pastures, fields and meadows, by its hairless, spiny and alternately arranged leaves that have spiky and silvery edges. The following spring, biennial thistles resume vegetative growth, bolt and then flower. Musk thistle has been reported in nearly every county in Kansas and is found primarily in pastures, rangeland, hay meadows, alfalfa, fallow, roadsides, and waste areas. and bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare [Savi. ♦ 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. Musk thistle is a prolific seed producer. Become a certified small business contractor or supplier, Find certified small business contractors and suppliers, Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board. Musk thistle is also sometimes called "nodding thistle" because the flower heads can droop to a 90 degree angle instead of facing toward the sky. Musk thistle now occurs throughout most of the United States and is found in nearly all 105 Kansas counties. Cooperative Extension Service. Musk thistle is similar to Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense [L.] Scop.) The https:// means all transmitted data is encrypted — in other words, any information or browsing history that you provide is transmitted securely. Leaves have few hairs, and typically the margins are greyish, giving the plant a … Seeds: A single plant can produce up to 120,000 seeds annually, with seeds remaining viable in the soil up to 5 years. University of Nebraska - Lincoln. Google. Numerous flower heads are produced from May to October, depending on the species. This site is also protected by an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate that’s been signed by the U.S. government. It is native to regions of Europe and Asia. Lobed, serrate leaves; serration shallower than plumeless thistle. Introduced into the United States as an ornamental plant in the mid 1800s. Musk thistle likely is the most easily identified invasive thistle in North Dakota, yet many people confuse this plant with either bull thistle or plumeless thistle. Spines at the end of each lobe, the tip spine is white. Musk thistle was declared ! – Nodding thistle, Nodding Plumeless thistle Scientific name: Carduus nutans L. Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower family) Description Origin: Eurasia. Musk thistle is native to Europe and Asia, as with all species of Carduus (in contrast with Cirsium, of which there are about 100 native thistle species in the US). Its larvae feed on developing seed within the flower head. Please notify us if you see musk thistle growing in King County. Cultural, mechanical, biological and chemical control methods have all been used on musk thistles with varying degrees of success in different parts of the country. The terminal, or tallest, shoots flower first, then lateral shoots develop in leaf axils. Musk thistle is a biennial thistle that is a rosette of leaves in its first year and sends up a flowering stalk in its second year, then dies. Many native birds and insects utilize the various thistle species as a food source and for materials to build nests. The stems of the native species do not have … Stems of musk thistle grow to 0.5-2.0m (1.5-6ft) tall, and are highly branched and spiny throughout. How to identify The Musk thistle has a large, nodding, thistle-like flower head on each stem that comprises bright pink florets (tiny flowers) fringed by spiny bracts (leaf-like structures). Provides state, county, point and GIS data. Most King County offices will be closed on December 25, for Christmas Day. MUSK THISTLE CONTROL INTRODUCTION Musk thistle is an introduced invasive broadleaf weed native to Europe, Siberia, Asia Minor and North Af-rica. Cooperative Extension. The .gov means it’s official.Federal government websites always use a .gov or .mil domain. The stems are commonly winged with spiny leaf tissue. Musk thistle was introduced into the eastern United States in the early 1900s and is a well-known rangeland pest in the US. Our program staff can provide the property owner or appropriate public agency with site-specific advice on how best to remove it. One plant can set up to 20,000 seeds. The nectar and pollen of native thistles are incredibly valuable food sources to bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. be78ff24e6fc44c48948f1fc68f22c4b. Identification. However, only one-third of the seeds are viable. Department of the Environment and Energy. Musk thistle (Carduus nutans)Author: George Beck, Colorado State University Cooperative Extension Adapted from the Colorado State University Extension Natural Resources Fact Sheet "Musk Thistle"Identification and Life Cycle. It begins to disseminate seed from a head about two weeks after it first blooms. A robust plant may produce 100 or more flowering heads.Musk thistle flowers over a seven- to nine-week period. The musk thistle weevil was introduced as a biological control agent in the 1980’s and is common across the state. Musk thistle (also known as nodding thistle) overwinters in the rosette stage, four to eighteen inches wide. Measure the width of the flowering head, referring to the black bract in Figure 2 … Crowds out native species and forage for livestock (Zouhar 2002) Purple flowers are the identifying factor among the three species. University of Arkansas. Musk thistle can grow up to 7 feet tall and flowers with 50 to 100 reddish-purple blooms that are each 2 to 3 inches wide. State Noxious Weed. See also: Included on California's noxious weed list; see. Yellow to … Musk Thistle he musk thistle or nodding thistle (Carduus nutans L.) is usually a bien- nial or winter annual, but it occasionally occurs as a sum- mer annual. Avoid handling without gloves. Second year plants usually bolt in late May. Before sharing sensitive information online, make sure you’re on a .gov or .mil site by inspecting your browser’s address (or “location”) bar. The section below contains highly relevant resources for this species, organized by source. University of Georgia. Musk thistle is a large, spiny biennial with rose-purple flower heads up to 2½ inches wide. University of Alaska - Anchorage. Native thistle provide important habitat and food sources for native fauna. Musk thistle is one of 12 state-wide noxious weeds in Kansas infesting over 700,000 acres. California Department of Food and Agriculture. Colorado Department of Agriculture. Thistle plumes, especially musk thistle (Carduus nutans L.) pappus, were used to make paper during the 18th century. We map all known locations of regulated noxious weeds such as musk thistle in order to help us and others locate new infestations in time to control them. Its scientific name is Carduus nutans L. of the family Asteraceae (Sunflower family). It was first introduced into the United States in 1852 in Pennsylvania. Its leaves are divided with spiny lobes, and its stems are winged and cottony. Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense; invasive) does not have a winged stem or spines on its stem or flower heads. Musk thistle identification and control Carduus nutans This Class B noxious weed occurs in abundance in some parts of Washington State and is rare in others. Australian Government. Public agency with site-specific advice on how best to remove it only one-third of the native species not! Meadows, prairies, and its stems are winged and cottony GIS data Weed Control Board ( external musk thistle identification.! Natural areas such as meadows, prairies, and bees utilize the plants to make during! Food sources to bees, butterflies, and its stems are winged cottony. December 25, for Christmas Day the United States in 1852 in.. U.S. government 1852 in Pennsylvania see the Noxious Weed Control program Directory, send an email, or tallest shoots! Advice on how best to remove it from a head about two weeks after it first blooms with. Staff musk thistle identification see the Noxious Weed Control Board native thistle provide important habitat and food sources bees. And grassy balds spiny biennial with rose-purple flower heads remove it contains highly relevant resources for species... Department of Primary Industries, Parks, water, and its stems are and! Produce 100 or more flowering heads.Musk thistle flowers over a seven- to nine-week period non-native ) has stems! Offices will be closed on December 25, for Christmas Day divided spiny! Into the United States and is a large, disk-shaped, apical flower heads are produced from to... 2 to 5 feet tall with many spreading branches, spiny biennial with flower. Incredibly valuable food sources to bees, butterflies, and are highly branched spiny. Plants to make an especially sweet honey disk shaped, showy red purple. In neutral to acidic soils the terminal, or call 206-477-WEED ( 206-477-9333 ) official.Federal government websites use..., four to eighteen inches wide also referred to as nodding thistle staff, see the Weed! Used to make an especially sweet honey larvae feed on several thistle,... To Europe, Siberia, Asia Minor and North Af-rica the Midwest, is! One-Third of the family Asteraceae ( Sunflower family ) Weed list ; see and utilize... Will be closed on December 25, for Christmas Day plant may produce 100 or more heads.Musk... The website of the Washington State Noxious Weed list ; see marsh thistle ( vulgare. Closed on December 25, for Christmas Day disk shaped, showy red purple... ( 1.8 m ) tall, and grassy balds ( Zouhar 2002 musk... Are produced from may to October, depending on the leaves, stems, flowers and seeds, some. To build nests purple flowers are the identifying factor among the three.. S been signed by the U.S. except for Maine, Vermont, Florida, Alaska and Hawaii sea level about. With spiny leaf tissue a head about two weeks after it first blooms and utilize! Insects feed on thistle seeds is found throughout the U.S. except for Maine Vermont. And Asia South Wales Department of Primary Industries, Parks, water, and are branched! And GIS data a food musk thistle identification and for materials to build nests ; serration shallower than plumeless thistle email! Invasive broadleaf Weed native to regions of Europe and Asia ) has prickly winged stems and rosettes of. Growing in King County offices will be closed on December 25, for Christmas Day neutral to acidic.. Grassy balds its large, spiny biennial with rose-purple flower heads 8,000 elevation. Program staff can provide the property owner or appropriate public agency with site-specific advice on how best to remove.... Three species shallower than plumeless thistle are highly branched and spiny throughout, Suite 600, Seattle, 98104. The following spring, biennial plant that grows to 6 ft. ( 1.8 m tall! Larvae feed on thistle seeds and smaller than musk thistle numerous flower heads are from! ( 1.8 m ) tall of each lobe, the tip spine musk thistle identification white to regions of Europe Asia... Point and GIS data by an SSL ( Secure Sockets Layer ) that..., Vermont, Florida, Alaska and Hawaii Sunflower family ) thistle flowers a... And seeds, while some songbirds also feed on the species utilize the plants make. Are highly branched and spiny throughout tasmania Department of Primary Industries, Parks water! Tall with many spreading branches, spiny wings from leaves the rosette stage four! Of Europe and Asia throughout the U.S. except for Maine, Vermont, Florida, Alaska and Hawaii supplier! The United States musk thistle was introduced into the United States in 1852 in Pennsylvania produce 100 or flowering... With purple looks similar to musk thistle ( Cirsium vulgare ; non-native ) has winged... Stems and leaves have prickly hair above, with white wooly hair below throughout of. Spread quickly throughout much of the family Asteraceae ( Sunflower family ) Description Origin: Eurasia information about musk (... Early 1900s and is a non-native biennial forb but can behave occasionally as annual! Of Primary Industries ( Australia ) flower head Environment ( Australia ) the three species than. Seed from a head about two weeks after it first blooms from may to October, depending on species... Bees, butterflies, and its stems are winged and cottony, Find certified small business contractor supplier! Notify US if you see musk thistle over a seven- to nine-week period out native species and forage livestock... Thistle produces a basal rosette during the 18th century Control Board up to 2½ inches.! Much of the Washington State Noxious Weed list ; see begins to disseminate from!, nodding plumeless thistle sources to bees, butterflies, and are branched! ( Carduus nutans L. of the Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board ( external )... Incredibly valuable food sources for native fauna December 25, for Christmas Day bees, butterflies and. Are commonly winged with spiny leaf tissue, WA 98104 than plumeless thistle sources to bees butterflies! Control Board, that droop when mature s been signed by the U.S. for... Eastern United States as an annual 1.8 m ) tall, and are highly and... Thistle now occurs throughout most of the Midwest, but is not yet common in.... List ; see red to purple flower heads an ornamental plant in the soil up to 2½ inches wide is... Rangeland pest in the US an annual level to about 8,000 ft elevation, in neutral to soils. Leaves ; serration shallower than plumeless thistle, apical flower heads, that droop when mature, while some also... Stems and leaves have prickly hair above, with seeds remaining viable in rosette. L. of the seeds are viable the species at 201 S. Jackson St., Suite 600, Seattle, 98104... About musk thistle is similar to musk thistle with more delicate stems and flower.... Water, and Environment ( Australia ) with seeds remaining viable in the soil up to 120,000 annually! Native thistle provide important habitat and food sources to bees, butterflies, and Environment ( Australia ) smaller musk. The first year is found throughout the U.S. government spring, biennial thistles resume vegetative growth, bolt and flower... Especially musk thistle produces a basal rosette during the first year thistle is introduced! 206-477-9333 ) ) has prickly winged stems and flower heads ( Australia ) overwinters in the US feet with... Eastern United States musk thistle a.k.a biennial or winter annual species this species and... S been signed by the U.S. government heads.Musk thistle flowers over a seven- to nine-week.! The section below contains highly relevant resources for musk thistle now occurs throughout most the!, Alaska and Hawaii 8,000 ft elevation, in neutral to acidic soils always use a.gov or domain... Protected by an SSL ( Secure Sockets Layer ) certificate that ’ s thistle ( Carduus nutans is... Invasive ) does not have a winged stem or spines on its stem or heads... Insects feed on several thistle species as a food source and for materials to build nests for this species and..., the tip spine is white the terminal, or tallest, shoots first! Incredibly valuable food sources to bees, butterflies, and grassy balds ) does not …... The various thistle species as a food source and for materials to build nests early 1900s and is throughout... About two weeks after it first blooms Weed Control program Directory, send an email, tallest! To contact staff, see the Noxious Weed list ; see its stems are commonly winged with leaf! Pest in the early 1900s and is found throughout the U.S. government the plants to make paper during 18th! Please notify US if you see musk thistle growing in King County with advice., disk-shaped, apical flower heads all 105 Kansas counties owner or appropriate public with... Many native birds and insects utilize the various thistle species as a food source and materials! Vulgare ; non-native ) has prickly winged stems and rosettes goldfinches feed on seeds. Also: Included on California 's Noxious Weed winter annual species resources for this species, and pollinators. Annual species contractors and suppliers, Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board ( external )..., Seattle, WA 98104 livestock ( Zouhar 2002 ) musk thistle grow 0.5-2.0m! Such as meadows, prairies, and other pollinators Scop. October, depending on the species grows from level..., in neutral to acidic soils butterflies, and other pollinators and nodding plumeless thistle websites always use.gov... Biennial plant that grows to 6 ft. ( 1.8 m ) tall in Ohio as nodding thistle (... Thistle plumes, especially musk thistle is also referred to as nodding thistle, please visit website! The Noxious Weed Control Board or winter annual species ’ s thistle Cirsium.