Plant Image
Flowers
Aspen Creek Tr - SS


Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Cirsium arizonicum - Arizona thistle

Plant Form: Forb

Family: Asteraceae


   
 
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Flowers
Clark Springs Tr
SS
Leaves
Aspen Creek Tr
SS
Plant - summer
Clark Springs Tr
SS
Plant - summer
Aspen Creek Tr
SS
Stem
Clark Springs Tr
SS
Stem
Aspen Creek Tr
SS
Forb Plant Description

Origin: Native   Life Cycle: Biennial or perennial
General Desc: The Arizona Thistle is extremely variable in its flower color and the shape of its leaves. However, the flower always appears only partly open, since the bracts never allow it to spread into the typical wide disk shape of other thistle species.
Height: 1 to 5 feet


Habitat

Habitat Description: Roadsides, chaparral and clearings in ponderosa pine forests; desert scrub, pinon/juniper woodlands.
Plant Communities: Desert Scrub, Interior Chaparral, Semidesert Grasslands, Pinyon Juniper Woodland, Montane Conifer Forest, Disturbed Areas
Elevation: 3000 - 7000 feet


Flower Characteristics

Color: Red to orange or pink to light purple     Shape: Daisy or Dandelion-like not in clusters     Tubular: N     Flowering Period: May - Oct
Description: As many as 100 flower heads per plant; each flower head, 5/8 to 2 inches long, is made up of thin tubular disk flowers held tightly by layers of spiny bracts. The bracts have a central white line and are arranged in a tight spiral.


Leaf and Stem Characteristics

Leaf Color: Grayish-green     Leaf Type: Simple     Leaf Shape: Triangular     Leaf Margin: Toothed     Leaf Attachment: Basal and alternate     Leaves Clasp: Y
Hairs: Leaves and stems     Spines: Y
Leaf Description: Very hairy; basal leaves are 1-1/2 to 12 inches long and have spine-tipped teeth or lobes; stem leaves are usually clasping.


Fruit and Seed Characteristics

Fruit Type: Achene
Seed Notes: Produce seeds that are an important food source for birds, especially for Northern Cardinals and Lesser Goldfinches.



  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
840 Rodeo Dr #C
Prescott, AZ 86305
(928) 445-6590
Version 3.1  
http://prescottnatives.com/SpeciesDetailForb.php  
Last Updated: June 15, 2013  
Content Questions/Comments: Email Jeff Schalau  
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