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You are here: Home / Plants / Species Profiles / Canada Thistle
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Canada Thistle

Canada ThistleScientific name: Cirsium arvense (L.) Scop (ITIS)

Common names: Canada thistle, Californian thistle, Canadian thistle, creeping thistle, field thistle, corn thistle, perennial thistle, field thistle

Click image to enlarge

Selected Resources

Native To: Europe (Nuzzo 1997)

Date of U.S. Introduction: 1600s (Nuzzo 1997)

Means of Introduction: Possibly accidental through farm seed shipments

Impacts: Crowds out native species (Stachion and Zimdahl 1980); reduces crop and forage yields (Malicki and Berbeciowa 1986)

Current U.S. Distribution:

Images:

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Selected Resources:

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Council or Task Force

Invasive Plants of California's Wildlands - Cirsium arvense
California Invasive Plant Council.
Bossard, C.C., J.M. Randall, and M.C. Hoshovsky (Editors). 2000. Invasive Plants of California's Wildlands. University of California Press. Berkeley, CA.

Invasive Plants of Ohio: Fact Sheet 14 - Canada Thistle (PDF | 214 KB)
Ohio Invasive Plants Council.
Included as one of the worst invasive plant species in Ohio's natural areas; for others see Invasive Plants of Ohio.

Fact Sheet: Canada Thistle (Jan 2014; PDF | 481 KB)
Alberta Invasive Species Council (Canada).
See also: Fact Sheets for more information about individual invasive species, including those listed as "Prohibited Noxious" and "Noxious" under the Alberta Weed Control Act.

Partnership

Federal Noxious Weed Disseminules of the U.S. - Fact Sheet: Cirsium arvense
USDA. APHIS. PPQ. Center for Plant Health Science and Technology; California Department of Food and Agriculture.

Alaska Exotic Plants Information Clearinghouse (AKEPIC): Species Biography - Canada Thistle (Feb 7, 2011; PDF | 142 KB)
University of Alaska - Anchorage. Alaska Center for Conservation Science.
See also: Non-Native Plant Species List for additional factsheets (species biographies) and species risk assessment reports of non-native species present in Alaska and also non-native species currently not recorded in Alaska (potential invasives).

Invasive Plant Atlas of New England (IPANE) - Canada thistle
University of Georgia. Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.

Invasive Plant Atlas of the United States - Canada Thistle
University of Georgia. Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.

New York Invasive Species Information - Canada Thistle
New York Invasive Species Clearinghouse.

Least Wanted: Alien Plant Invaders of Natural Areas Fact Sheet - Canada Thistle
Plant Conservation Alliance. Alien Plant Working Group.

Invasive Species Compendium - Cirsium arvense
CAB International.

Global Invasive Species Database - Cirsium arvense (herb)
IUCN. Species Survival Commission. Invasive Species Specialist Group.

Federal Government

U.S. National Plant Germplasm System - Cirsium arvense
USDA. ARS. National Genetic Resources Program. GRIN-Global.

Fire Effects Information System (FEIS) - Cirsium arvense
USDA. FS. Rocky Mountain Research Station. Fire Sciences Laboratory.

PLANTS Database - Canada Thistle
USDA. NRCS. National Plant Data Center.

International Government

Weeds in Australia - Perennial Thistle (Cirsium arvense)
Australian Government. Department of the Environment.

State Government

Encycloweedia: Data Sheet - Cirsium genus
California Department of Food and Agriculture.
Included on California's noxious weed list; see Encycloweedia: Program Details for additional resources.

Noxious Weed Species - Canada Thistle
Colorado Department of Agriculture. Conservation Services Division. Noxious Weed Program.

Invasive Plants in Pennsylvania: Canada Thistle (PDF | 576 KB)
Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

See also: Invasive Plants fact sheets (scroll to view) for plant species (trees, shrubs, vines, herbs and aquatic plants) that have impacted the state's natural lands.

Field Guide: Invasive - Canada Thistle
Missouri Department of Conservation.

See also: Problem Plant Control (scroll to Invasive Plants section) for more information to help you identify and control most common invasive plants in Missouri

Class C Noxious Weed: Canada Thistle
Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board.

Canada Thistle
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

Academic

Canada Thistle
Colorado State University. Cooperative Extension.

Canada Thistle - Noxious Weeds of Nebraska (May 2009; PDF | 941 KB)
University of Nebraska - Lincoln. Cooperative Extension.

Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide - Canada Thistle
Ohio State University. Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

Professional

Noxious Weed Information - Canada Thistle (B List)
Colorado Weed Management Association.

Weed Identification - Canada Thistle
Montana Weed Control Association.

BioBullies - Canada Thistle
Natural Biodiversity (Western Pennsylvania).
See also: Invasive Species Fact Sheets for the worst trouble-makers in the region, and also for additional trouble-makers for you to watch out for.

Citations

Integrated Taxonomic Information System.Cirsium arvense. [Accessed Mar 14, 2015].

Malicki, L. and C. Berbeciowa. 1986. Uptake of more important mineral components by common field weeds on loess soil. Acta Agrobotanica 39:129-142.

Nuzzo, V. 1997. Element Stewardship Abstract for Cirsium arvense (PDF | 131 KB). Arlington, Va.: Nature Conservancy.

Stachion, W.J. and R.L. Zimdahl. 1980. Allelopathic activity of Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense) in Colorado. Weed Science 28:83-86.

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Last Modified: Sep 17, 2016
 
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