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Common Name: Wavy-Leaved Thistle
Cirsium undulatum is a perennial plant that can grow up to 0.60 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of materials.
Western N. America - British Columbia to Texas.
Mixedgrass prairie, shortgrass prairie, Palouse prairie, sagebrush deserts, pinyon-juniper woodlands, openings in montane coniferous forests, often in disturbed areas at elevations of 100 - 2800m[
|Pollinators||Bees, Flies, Lepidoptera, Beetles, Self
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. This species has deeply seated running roots that produce adventitious buds. It is listed in California as a noxious weed[
]. However, most reports of Cirsium undulatum in California are based upon misidentifications of C. canescens[
]. Cirsium undulatum is known to hybridize with C. flodmanii, C. hookerianum, and C. scariosum var. coloradense[
]. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus.
An easily grown plant, succeeding in any ordinary garden soil in a sunny position[
Root - raw or cooked[
]. One of the more palatable thistles, it is used as a vegetable or can be added to soups and stews[
]. It can be dried and stored for winter use[
]. The root is likely to be rich in inulin, a starch that cannot be digested by humans. This starch thus passes straight through the digestive system and, in some people, ferments to produce flatulence[
Stems - peeled and eaten raw or cooked[
]. One of the more palatable thistles[
A decoction of the root has been used in the treatment of gonorrhoea[
]. A cold infusion of the root has been used as a wash for eye diseases[
The seed of all species of thistles yields a good oil by expression[
]. No details of potential yields etc are given[
Seed - sow early spring or autumn in situ. Germination usually takes place within 2 - 8 weeks at 20°c[