E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Carduus acanthoides L. subsp. acanthoides
plumeless thistle (spiny plumeless thistle)
Asteraceae (Aster family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Odin Scholz  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #50271)

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Distribution of Carduus acanthoides subsp. acanthoides
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Species Information

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Biennial herb; stems spiny-winged, branched above, 0.3-1.5 m tall.
Basal leaves lacking; stem leaves narrowly elliptic or oblong in outline, deeply lobed or pinnately cut, up to 25 cm long and 8 cm wide, sparsely hairy on main veins, spiny-margined.
Heads discoid, 1.5-2.5 cm wide, clustered or solitary and erect at the ends of branches; involucres hemispheric; involucral bracts linear-lanceolate, in 2-3 series, somewhat leafy and spreading, outer ones spine-tipped; disk flowers usually purplish, sometimes cream or white, nearly 2 cm long.
Achenes glabrous, egg-shaped, with 15-20 dark longitudinal lines and a lighter collar at the tip; pappus whitish with minutely finely-barbed bristles.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Moist to dry fields, roadsides or waste places in the montane zone; rare in E BC; introduced from Europe.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References