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Common Name: St. Barnaby's Thistle
Centaurea solstitialis is a Annual/Biennial up to 0.60 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and medicine
There is a report that the plant causes brain lesions and a nervous syndrome called 'chewing disease' in horses[
S. Europe to W. Asia. Occasionally established in S. and E. England[
Cultivated land and waste ground[
|Bees, Flies, Lepidoptera, Self
Succeeds in ordinary garden soil[
]. Prefers a well-drained fertile soil and a sunny position[
]. Tolerates dry, low fertility and alkaline soils[
A good bee and butterfly plant the flowers are rich in nectar[
Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[
The plant is eaten as a vegetable[
]. The part used is not specified.
The powdered seed is used as a remedy for stone[
The powdered root is said to be a cure for fistula and gravel[
Seed - sow mid spring in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer.
If you have sufficient seed it can be sown in situ in the spring, and an autumn swing in situ might also be worth trying.