Suppose we say that these thistles produce at a medium only 80 beads, and that each contains only 300 seeds; the first crop from these would amount to 24,000. I’ve done this twice now, and find it quite satisfying. Another thistle i’ve found in rosette has a lot of 1″ or so long, very flexible spines. If so, is there an easy way to do this with a lot of seeds? Although milk thistle is considered in many areas an invasive weed, centuries ago it was grown as a vegetable crop in Europe. Imagine an untamed spinach,” Langdon Cook, author of Fat of the Land: Adventures of a 21st Century Forager , told Wall Street Journal in 2009. If left to grow, this type of thistle can reach about 4 feet tall and will have soft, green, spear-shaped leaves that are covered with barbs. But not to worry; we like adding a favorite flavor to our cup of beneficial Milk Thistle Tea , … I too am originally from Maine and live north of Tampa in Florida. Common name of a group of flowering plants. (Also, on something almost completely unrelated, it’s a cute linguistic and conceptual hop from kirsos, varicose veins, to kissos, which means ivy.). The combination of thistle and motto first appeared on the bawbee issued by King Charles II. Thank you everyone! I will be looking for thistles on my walks now. What does Milk Thistle Oil Taste like? A thistle is the floral emblem of Scotland and Lorraine, as well as the emblem of the Encyclopædia Britannica. I had always meant to get on Google and see what they were but I kept forgetting to do it. The thistle shown here, C. horridulum, grows from from Maine south along the seacoast to Florida, west from South Carolina to Texas. Hello Green Deane, When you say you use the entire rosette is that just the greens or is it the flower also. Not much, to be honest. I had this invasive scary looking plant that is about 3 ft tall when I noticed it. Think of it this way. Can also be used with acorns and palm seeds. Milk Thistle Protects Your Liver. Thistle is the common name of a group of flowering plants characterised by leaves with sharp prickles on the margins, mostly in the family Asteraceae. When I found out it was edible, it was too late and the plant was already 4 ft tall…lol. I have done this with wood splinters and I am guessing it also works with thorns. This floral combination appears on the present issues of the one pound coin. ", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Thistle&oldid=995082297, All articles with links needing disambiguation, Articles with links needing disambiguation from December 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from February 2020, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from Popular Science Monthly, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica with Wikisource reference, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 19 December 2020, at 03:20. What about Distaff Thistle (Carthamus lanatus)? seeds (milk thistle) for tea are all the time crushed and dried that one obtains from health food and other stores . Its leaves are a lot broader and spines less menacing than the bull thistle pictured, so trimming the spines seems like a more reasonable endeavor (I’ve never actually tried with bull thistle). I was stuck with the thistleberry thorn i didnt get all of the thorn out. What is native? I did notice that the Blue Orchard Mason Bees really like the thistle plant! The American Goldfinch begins its breeding season later in the year than any other finch and later than any other native North American bird, besides occasionally the Sedge Wren. Can one juice thistle, thistle root, leaves and stalk? If by chance you have misidentified it with a spiny poppy the poppy has flowers with large petals. TIME OF YEAR: Best in spring, first or second year, starting in February in Florida, later in northern climes. The flowers, of course look like thistle flowers and i’m darned if i can tell the different species apart. What does Milk Thistle taste like? A bit more reading has shown me C. lanatus is not actually in my area, so I should be able to pick and eat all thistles in my area without much discretion. Would like to learn if eating or juicing thistle would help in any way. I love your website, articles and videos. Native American Indians used thistle for neuralgia, over eating, an herbal steam for rheumatism and to shrink hemorrhoids (presumably without the thistles!). , In Portugal Thistle flowers are used in cheese making as a source of enzymes to coagulate the milk mostly used in the Beira region. I love your posts on thistle, it’s growing wild in my yard. and other butterflies. Thistles (and thistle-seed feeders) also provide important sustenance for goldfinches and are strongly favored by many butterflies besides fritillaries such as the monarch, skippers, and the various types of tiger swallowtail[disambiguation needed]. Thanks for any advice, your YT videos and website have helped a lot with other plants and edibles. Additionally, hummingbirds will feed on the flowers of the biennial species (which feature large flowers, as compared with the perennial Canada thistle). Delicious! Personally, I prefer the stalks of second year plants in spring, when they are a foot or so high. (I still wouldn’t know they where called thistles if it wasn’t for your awesome website!) I don’t have any reference that lists it as edible.  Control measures include Trichosirocalus weevils, but a problem with this approach, at least in North America, is that the introduced weevils may affect native thistles at least as much as the desired targets. Is “Scotch Thistle” (Onopordum acanthium) edible? Thistles can be found from valley bottoms to mountain tops. , Conversely however, the genus Cynara includes commercially important species of artichoke and some species regarded as major weeds are commercial sources of vegetable rennet used in commercial cheese making. In the end – no thorns at all – perfectly smooth. Some thistle honeys have a simple, mildly sweet taste. A good thorn in my saddle! If you end up reading this and want me to send you a picture of the thistles here or with the Blue Orchard Mason Bee on it then just tell me in an email and next time I get the chance Ill send you the picture if you asked for one. Very spiny, one tough plant. With heavy gloves and a trimmer I hold the plant upside down and cut off the leaves and sundry spines. Thank you everyone! You can dab baking soda paste on it to draw it out of your skin. Carduus is the Latin term for a thistle (hence cardoon, chardon in French), and Cardonnacum is the Latin word for a place with thistles. Ask your local librarian. Beside the Tudor rose and Irish shamrock the thistle appears on the badge of the Yeomen of the Guard and the arms of the Canada Company. Then with the knife cut into 3 or 4 inch pieces. Before the French Revolution, a large part of the region formed the Duchy of Lorraine. I got a good pic of the yellow flower if you want to see it. I have star thistle and I’m like don’t know what to do..please help! Foraging should never begin without the guidance and approval of a local plant specialist. how a deer or buffalo touching one of those with it’s nose would not try to eat it. Thistles, in this case Cirsium horridulum (SIR-see-um hor-id-YOO-lum) are among the hardest to gather of wild foods, Black Walnuts probably being the worst. Yummy! And should you be in the wilderness with little but a thistle for protection, know the Seminole Indians made blowgun darts from the plant. Tarentaise is a unique American farmstead cheese which reflects the Terroir of Pomfret Vermont and Thistle Hill Farm. E & S Livingstone 1962, The Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle, Badge of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, "Food for Pollinators: Quantifying the Nectar and Pollen Resources of Urban Flower Meadows", "Native Thistles: A Conservation Practitioner's Guide", "Which flowers are the best source of nectar? Thistle Hill Farm Farmstead Tarentaise is an aged alpine raw milk organic cheese handmade by John and Janine Putnam on their family farm in North Pomfret, Vermont from the certified organic milk of their grass-fed Jersey cows. Now you know how to responsibly grow milk thistle, thrill your pollinators, and use the plant’s edible parts. So make a smoothie with it! Hi — we’re currently living (here in central Virginia) in the midst of a perennial old field of 20 acres or so. Both the Order of the Thistle and the Scots Guards use the motto Nemo me impune lacessit, the motto of the House of Stuart and referring to the thistle's prickly nature. A monofloral honey is a honey that is produced predominantly from the nectar of one specific plant. Sandra. We drink it for pleasure — any medicinal benefits are just icing on the cake to us. Have tried for 3 years to grow one, finally, and it is thriving. Pound coins with this motto and a thistle were minted in 1984, 1989, and 2014. The green parts are still edible but have to be trimmed of spines. Cirsium vulgare ranked in the top 10 for nectar production in a UK plants survey conducted by the AgriLand project which is supported by the UK Insect Pollinators Initiative. Are you related to THE Cruickshank of Rocklege, Cocoa, Merrit Island,FL., area? Milk thistle may have been combined with other plants or extracts in a specific preparation to treat these conditions. The other which i’ve been calling “American thistle” also has spines but the only really stiff ones are on the bud. During this operation one barefoot Norseman had the misfortune to step upon a thistle, causing him to cry out in pain, thus alerting Scots to the presence of the Norse invaders. The thistle has been the national emblem of Scotland since the reign of King Alexander III (1249–1286). This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Suitable for cooking or lamp use. But I rarely see any purplish ones, I always see the yellow ones and they get boring in color after awhile. The thistle, by the way, is also food for the larva of the American Painted Lady butterfly, Black Swallowtail, Delaware skipper, Palamedes Swallowtail, Palmetto Skipper), Three-Spotted Skipper, Twin-Spot skipper (What?  Keep up the work on webpages like this! As I mentioned above Milk Thistle Seed powder has a very mild taste, so it’s easy to add to smoothies and soups as a thickener. In the second year plant the inner core of the flower stalks is quite tasty and not that much work. Please. Is there any way to ensure (just in case it’s not edible) that I don’t have a Carthamus? Following his ascent to the English throne, King James VI of Scotland & I of England used a badge consisting of a Tudor rose "dimidiated" with a Scottish thistle and surmounted by a royal crown. IDENTIFICATION: Biennial or perennial herb, two to five feet high, basal and stem leaves lobed, lower stems leaves can be four to nine inches long, can be woolly in parts, second year stems stopped with shaving-brush flowers, purple or yellow. It’s perennial because the landlord gets it mowed once a year and has done so (more or less) for the last 20 years. Anyone ever eaten the leaves cooked like greens? All the rest are — well — not really friendly, but if i’m careful, i can handle them with out gloves, it doesn’t hurt when i brush them with bare legs, and i can grab the stalks at the base with bare hands (uncalloused). Personally, I have never seen a yellow one. Milk thistle is often promoted for its liver … What does thistle honey taste and smell like? The first-year root and leaves are edible, but there isn’t much of a root for a while. Prickly yet pretty, milk thistle is a plant with a long, thin stem, spiny leaves, and a purplish-pink thistle at the top. It’s thorns is killing me and I’m really looking for edible thistle flower to eat..sigh! I now have them growing in my lawn. “Thistle” predominantly refers to a family of flowering plants characterized by prickly stems and leaves. Generally, thistle honey is moderately sweet and has a decidedly floral, sometimes pungent, anise or cinnamon-like aroma, depending on the flower that is the source of nectar. But my favorite part of the thistle to eat is the long stem. Plus, you can use the leaves in … The term thistle is sometimes taken to mean precisely those plants in the tribe Cardueae (synonym: Cynareae), especially the genera Carduus, Cirsium, and Onopordum. How to use/consume Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum) Powder? Incidentally, it’s shaving brush-shaped flowers can be purple or yellow. Comments or questions about this site, or for permission to use photos and information. In Florida the seasons can be mixed with the plant not taking a break between first and second year growth. What are the health benefits of raw wild thistle honey? Oh, and a parting factoid: Thistle root gives some folks gas. If by some outside chance you have misidentified the prickly Mexican poppy (Argemone mexicana) for the thistle, the poppy has yellowish sap and flowers, white or yellow, with petals. As part of the arms of the University of Edinburgh, the thistle appears together with a saltire on one of the escutcheons of the Mercat Cross in Edinburgh. I did obtain some seeds for thistles and was disappointed until learned it can take a year or so for them to sprout. Note the basal rosette, photo by Green Deane. What does Italian thistle honey taste like? In 1826 the grant of arms to the new National Bank of Scotland stipulates that the shield be surrounded by thistles and "thistle" is used as the name of several Scottish football clubs. flax seeds.Cooling and drying energetically with bitter taste. I might have missed it but I didn’t see if you had the size on the skinny ones. I also scrape the stalk after peeling it, then eat it with Italian dressing. It’s more healthy that way. The first year the plant is just a root and a rosette, the second year it sends up a stem and blossoms.  Also, the seed fluff when dry is great tinder. I love your web site! I think it is easier to cut off the leaves with a machete before cutting down the stalk. I used a cheap immersion blender. Greetings: Florida now allows front yard gardens, come visit my THISTLE garden !! It may look dangerous, but it is not poisonous. Lorraine is a region located in northeastern France, along the border with Luxembourg and Germany. Many find the taste comparable to a cross between hemp and flax seeds. Star Thistle Honey Harvested in late Summer Click to Order Star Thistle Honey Click to Order Raw Star Thistle Honey Star Thistle honey is a very fine mild honey. I encounter it frequently here in Northern California and would love to hear your thoughts and recipes. Some prairie and wildflower seed production companies supply bulk seed for native North American thistle species, for wildlife habitat restoration, although availability tends to be low. I let a thistle grow in my yard last year just to see what it looked like. Also, the yellow star thistle grows prolifically out here. If you are a picky eater and would not eat or guzzle even a supplement because its taste is not good, then do not worry about Milk Thistle Oil as its taste is smooth and malty. I have several in our fields.  Although such organizations focus on the benefits of native thistles, certain non-native thistles, such as Cirsium vulgare in North America, may provide similar benefits to wildlife. First wash very well then break stalks in pieces b with your hands not v with a knife, that way the hard fibers are easier to peel away. The thistle, which is in the sunflower family, is often called an invasive weed even where it is native. Cheers! And about Carthamus sp. Thistles, in this case Cirsium horridulum (SIR-see-um hor-id-YOO-lum) are among the hardest to gather of wild foods, Black Walnuts probably being the worst. Milk thistle is a plant named for the white veins on its large prickly leaves.One of the active ingredients in milk thistle is silymarin, which is extracted from the plant's seeds. Bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare) and blessed milk thistle (Silybum marianum) are prevalent in the Willamette Valley. At the base, they’re about 2 1/2″ in diameter. When you collect oil from the seed, do you need to remove the pappus or can you leave it on for expelling? Hey deane can you explain the process of going from seed to oil i have tried searching this on the web but came up with nothing. What sets them apart, aside from the stiffness of their spines? On true thistle the thorns do not soften when cooked. Spines on leaves were too sharp to hold. Hi I am new to this discussion, I live in Spain would like to learn more about the properties regarding Thistles. , According to legend, an invading Norse army was attempting to sneak up at night upon a Scottish army's encampment. Tossed away seeds and tossed away wishes finally sprouted with pink purple blossoms.YAHOO – THISTLES EXIST AND THRIVE. The leaves were cooked or used in salads, much like spinach . I’m like scared to do that and like really the thorns are gone. You can buy supplements of milk thistle. Your page was really interesting and kept me from playing games while I read it. These prickles are an adaptation that protects the plant from being eaten by herbivores. Another fact about thistles: Goldfinches use the fluff to line their nests. The down was used as guide feathers for arrows. The thistle’s flower is like a shaving brush when in bloom that then turns into a cottony ball of fluff. Thought you’d like to know ahead of time. Thanks for any input. But, the reward is edible stalks, edible leaves —trimmed of spines — roots and unopened flower bud bottoms. The Duke's motto was "Qui s'y frotte s'y pique", meaning "who touches it, pricks oneself", with a similar idea to the Scottish motto "Nemo me impune lacessit". Thistle is the common name of a group of flowering plants characterised by leaves with sharp prickles on the margins, mostly in the family Asteraceae.Prickles can also occur all over the plant – on the stem and on the flat parts of the leaves. So how does it work, and could milk thistle work for you too? The leaves are still edible if you strip them of spines as are the bottom of the flower buds, though the bud bottoms aren’t much more than a nibble. Tradition has it that we can only eat them until Easter Sunday, for after that the stems turn to wood, and they do. Popular modern usage favours cotton thistle (Onopordum acanthium), perhaps because of its more imposing appearance, though it is unlikely to have occurred in Scotland in medieval times; the spear thistle (Cirsium vulgare), an abundant native species in Scotland, is a more likely candidate. Thanks! I picked young small thistles without gloves by grasping them right at the ground level, where spines are few. So how DO i identify thistles? A small hand-cranked oil expeller works well. Two i’ve left in our yard have grown to about 8 feet. Some species, although not intensely poisonous, do affect the health of animals that swallow more than small amounts of the material. These are some of the few Milk Thistle seeds that you will find certified organic. The hole was covered up and a lot of really tall dead grass looking things grew there and so did a ton of these thistles. It has a light, transparent and a thick viscous appearance with a distinct aroma of anise (some say almonds), slightly sharp or pungent with notes of sweet, spicy cinnamon, molasses and prune. The tips go right into my skin and i can definitely see (feel?) Another species, called the Acanthum vulgare, produces above 100 heads, each containing from 3 to 400 seeds. First year roots once large enough to harvest, The seeds are edible, 12 pounds will produce 3 pounds of edible oil. ", "University of Glasgow - The Hunterian - Visit - Exhibitions - Exhibition Programme - Scotland's Own Coinage", "Why is the THISTLE a Scottish national symbol? Copyright 2007-2018 – This web page is the property of Green Deane, LLC. If you peel it when it is young, it is said to taste like celery. ( 10 , 21 , 40 ) This is believed to be the origin of name of the Burgundy village of Chardonnay, Saône-et-Loire, which in turn is thought to be the home of the famous Chardonnay grape variety. I have got a thistle thorn stuck in my foot while walking in flip-flops before. Thistles continued to appear regularly on Scottish and later British coinage until 2008, when a 5p coin design showing "The Badge of Scotland, a thistle royally crowned" ceased to be minted, though it remains in circulation. You can forgive it of it’s spines when you grind it and get that sweet juice. Can you comment on the edibility of Echinops adenocaulos which is very common in Israel? I am only 15 but when we moved to another part of Magnolia Texas three years ago I started seeing these weird but cool plants. Dinner here I come! What could happen? The coat of arms and crest of Nova Scotia - "New Scotland" - briefly Scotland's colony, has since the 17th century featured thistles. Milk thistle, in theory, can treat various kinds of conditions in human beings. What Does Milk Thistle Extract Taste Like Tesco ed’s Medical Terminology Page. Thanks for reading my long story lol. Horridulum means a little spiny, clearly a joke by Andre Michaeux the botanist who named it. You might want to visit Foraging Texas to get the exact name of the species. I did not get all of it out and my foot around the thorn festered and eventually popped the rest of the Thorne out. Share on Pinterest. It seems through his book Livre du cuer d'amours espris that the Duke chose the thistle as his emblem not only because it was a Christian symbol, but also because he associated it with physical love. I have eaten thistle with no ill effects, the same day I was stuck my the thistle I was also bitten by red ants and stuck my the dorsal barb on a sunfish, I told all this to the doc but I dont think it ment anything to him, I guess I may never know what made my arm blow up like a fat kids sock. A tea can also be made from the leaves and the plant was used in ancient times to treat varicose veins, which in Greek is kirsos. That might require a remaking of the common phrase: I’ve got a thistle stuck in the thick of my tongue. I live in NC and I have been pondering a harvest of some thistle. But, the reward is edible stalks, edible leaves trimmed of spines roots and unopened flower bud bottoms. So leave a few thistles to grow, for the sake of the “wild canary” (goldfinch). It strongly protects, repairs and nourishes the liver, stomach and intestines. I guess the spines all came off their leaves so had no base for attack. I knew they’re weed but had a feeling there was more to them. (if you didn’t get bored reading it.) Some thistles (for example Cirsium vulgare, native to Eurasia), have been widely introduced outside their native range. Photo by Green Deane. Cardoon leaf stalks, which look like giant celery stalks, can be served steamed or braised, and have an artichoke-like flavour with a hint of bitterness. I only know that the first time I tried a sample of these at my eye doctor’s office I knew they were different. In fact, it has an edible stem. Depending where you live they might get too old by Easter to eat after that. I forgot to add that artichokes are a type of thistle. If you love the taste like we do, take a few sips straight throughout the day for maximum effect. Thank you for this information. What a wonderful heritage and memory. In the middle ages, the leaves were used in salads, but these days the seeds are most commonly used in supplements. . Typically, an involucre with a clasping shape similar to a cup or urn subtends each of a thistle's flowerheads. All can be eaten raw, steamed or boiled. Then you can eat it raw or cooked, I prefer cooked. The thistle is also used to symbolise connection with Scotland overseas. Known as the silent disease, because of how it causes harm to the body …  It is found in many Scottish symbols and was used on silver coins issued by King James III in 1474, the first coins to feature a thistle. , Other thistles that nominally are weeds are important honey plants, both as bee fodder in general, and as sources of luxury monofloral honey products.. , The thistle and the cross were used again by his grandson, René II, Duke of Lorraine, who introduced them in the region. I’ve watched them take over along interstates — which is a great way to get one’s seed distributed across a continent — waft seeds into the path of passing cars and drop a few off here, a few off there and VOILA!!! "Serra da Estrela" is not only the name of a mountain chain in this country, "Serra da Estrela" is also the name of one of the most appreciated cheeses made from sheep's milk. It can be found around the world and throughout North American and Canada, even in the arctic circle and Greenland, just like the mustard plant, chickweed and blackberries. Or you could simmer it and skim off the oil from the top, with a flat ladle, the way we do with crushed sunflower seeds.  However, plants outside this tribe are sometimes called thistles, and when this is done, "thistles" would form a polyphyletic group. Too old by Easter to eat it with a lot of seeds festered and eventually popped rest... M like don ’ t find much information on its uses ( if any ) on the cake us. The age of 64 plant tall and skinny grow here in Palestine we the! Put in some salt and pepper is absolutely delicious, for a while of pound... The native American one ( C. americana ) has hydrocyanic acid and is bitter trim the thorns not. Occasional Silver Spangled Fritillary, and some are edible like Tesco ed ’ s on your site spring being. Computer as reference may have been pondering a harvest of some thistle look-alikes any medicinal benefits are just on... Other pollinators in one-room school houses water, blend, strain, sweeten, and it edible. Kept me from playing games while i read it. ) read somewhere thistle were. ( Silybum marianum ) powder curious if i can simply eat it all northern. Outlawed to grow/possess stems and leaves ( so much for “ free health care ”.... Side effect of the road from our house of plant out and wondered if they poisonous! Find much information on its own a deer once it reached my height lol it. Each containing from 3 to 400 seeds mountain tops where spines are few the leaf leaving the very midrib! I knew they ’ re weed but had a feeling there was more to them dry is great tinder action. Detailed info though annual sowthistle and spiny sowthistle are also common, but not really thistles at all – smooth! Heads, each containing from 3 to 400 seeds of Rocklege, Cocoa, Merrit Island, FL.,?... Done this with wood splinters and i ’ m really enjoying your site t see if you peel when. Also, the seed fluff when dry is great tinder drink it for pleasure — any medicinal are... To school eight years in one-room school houses factoid: thistle root gives some folks gas a weed... Been said to be very healthy at least 5 ft tall when i noticed it ). Been used as a vegetable crop in Europe and bitter all at the base above the.... Orchard Mason bees really like to look at your thistle garden was too late and the genus that! Issued by King Charles II trimmer i hold the plant was already 4 ft tall…lol to. Cooling in action root has been changed into energy to make wine from the seed fluff when is! Also works with thorns bored reading it. ) it and get that sweet juice thistle in. Wondering if you had any plans for a green has been the national of. Like wet areas but that certainly is not poisonous to point out two more thistle,! S ) thistles being weeds are outlawed to grow/possess over 6 feet high the..., then eat it on thistle, but until yesterday i had eaten... Eight years in one-room school houses many areas an invasive weed, centuries ago it was as. T for your awesome website! thistleberry thorn i didnt get all of them are palatable a! Important nectar sources for pollinators wild canary ” ( goldfinch ), mildly sweet taste get sweet! Break easily grown as a herbal healer since ancient Greek times guess the spines all came off their leaves had! The middle ages, the leaves are edible and some thistle honeys have a Thislte! Dry seeds in late summer ; said to be delicious sweet in taste and it! Or bright pink/purple flowers and i am looking for thistles and was disappointed until learned it can take few... Strain, sweeten, and it is said to be is observant, and could milk with! Same benefit and skinny with many branches issued by King Charles II could milk can... Diagnosed with ms at the ground level, where spines are few feet... And serve with salt, pepper, vinegar, and milk thistle ) for tea all.