CARDUUS ARGENTATUS 

Family:- COMPOSITAE/Sect. LEPTOCEPHALI

Common Name:- None

Synonyms:- Cirsium argentatum, Cnicus argentatus.

Meaning:- Carduus (L) Thistle.
                  Argentatus (L) Silvered, silver-plated.

General description:- Annual with a fairly stout taproot, sparsely arachnoid-
tomentose throughout.

Stem:-
1) Erect, sparingly branched, generally 40-70 cm, with green, spiny wings.

Leaves:-
1) Lower pinnatifid.
2) Upper usually simple, linear-oblong, all spiny-dentate.

Flowers:-
1) Capitula solitary on long, slender peduncles.
2) Involucre 14-20 mm, twice as long as broad.
3) Phyllaries numerous, imbricate, lanceolate, extended into a greenish apical
    spine with thickened midrib and margins.
4) Corolla 9-12 mm, pinkish-purple; tube widened above into an ellipsoid cup
    c. 2 mm.

Fruit:-
1) Achenes 25-3 mm, compressed, somewhat rugulose; apical prominence shortly
    stipitate, cylindrical, 5-lobed.
2) Pappus 7-9 mm.

Key features:-
1) Corolla not more than 15 mm.
2) Stem with stout ribs only.
3) Involucral bracts distinctly contracted at the middle, without a thickened margin.

Click here for a glossary of terms used.

Habitat:- Coastal habitats, field margins and wasteground, also open shrubby
vegetation on rocky hillslopes 0-600 m. (to 1300 m in Crete).

Distribution:- C and E Mediterranean area extending to N. Iraq. Scattered
distribution on Crete, mainly in the east and west.

Flowering time:- Apr-June.

Photos by:- Marinos Gogolos
SPECIES DESCRIPTION