Extension > Garden > Diagnose a problem > Is this plant a weed? > Broadleaf Weeds > Basal > Musk Thistle
Musk Thistle (Nodding Thistle)
Carduus nutans L.
- - CLICK PHOTOS TO ENLARGE -
- Prairie and landscape plantings
- Mostly found in the southern half of Minnesota
- Lawns (occasionally)
- Biennial plant that produces a basal rosette the first year
- Second year plant produces a 3-6’ tall flowering stem with spiny wings
- Leaves are coarsely toothed, very spiny, and nearly hairless; leaf edges (margins) are white
- Purple to lavender flower heads are 1-2” in diameter
- Stem section just below flower head (peduncle) curves or droops toward the ground
- Flowers bloom June through Aug
- Large taproot
Plants that look similar:
Did this tool help you identify the weed? Tell us.