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Welted Thistle: seams like a nice plant

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Welted Thistle: seams like a nice plant

When I first identified this as a welted thistle (Cardus crispus) I had to stop and think "What on earth is welted?". The best way to find out was to refer to my ever present Collins English Dictionary and I found out that a welt is a raised or strengthened seam on a garment. Not being one for dress making I guess it is not surprising I had not come across the term before!

Once you know what a welt is then it becomes obvious why this is a welted thistle, it has a raise edge along the underside of its stems, they look almost like a saw blade (I do know a little about saws, although not a lot!). Sadly my photograph does not show this feature but all good field guides will surely do so. It is a little like the marsh thistle but once you notice the welt it is quite distinctive.

This seems to be more common in the south east of England and up the east coast rather than here in the south west and I have, so far, only found it in one place. It likes dry conditions and so chalk is a good place to look for it.

It is thought that this plant may be beneficial in treating cancer as it contains Crispine B (hence the Latin name of crispus).


 

If you would like to see the complete series that this post is part of click here ---->
This nature note was written by ----> Peter Orchard
This nature nore was written ----> 2 years 8 months ago

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