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Recent thistles

6 July 2011

Gone to seed …

I photographed these thistles near Oberon at the end of April 2011. I think they are spear thistles (Cirsium vulgare), but I’m not a botanist, and although I’m getting better at identifying the different species, I could very well be wrong …

Closer up

Identifying different species of thistle is tricky—even for botanists. At the Third Biennial Noxious Plants Conference, held in Canberra in 1985, there was a Thistle Identification Competition. Sixteen specimens were presented, most at the rosette stage (i.e. like the one in the photo below). Out of 70 entries, only 2 scientists correctly named all sixteen thistle species.

Rosette

From → Thistles

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