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

Canada Thistle

Canada ThistleScientific name: Cirsium arvense (L.) Scop

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

Click image to enlarge

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:

Video:

Selected Internet Resources:

Federal Government

Cirsium arvense
Integrated Taxonomic Information System.
Taxonomy

Thistles - Integrated Pest Management Manual
DOI. National Park Service.
Identification/Description; Impacts; Life Cycle; Dispersion; Controls; Special Note: Excellent references section

Cirsium arvense Article Citation Search - AGRICOLA Database
USDA. National Agricultural Library.
Research; Special Note: NAL Catalog Search (resources)

Cirsium arvense (L.) Scop. - Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN)
USDA. ARS. National Genetic Resources Program.
Taxonomy

Canada Thistle - Biological Control of Invasive Plants in the Eastern United States (Aug 2002)
BugwoodWiki.
Published by: USDA. Forest Service. Publication FHTET-2002-04.

Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Distribution; Introduction History; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Controls

Cirsium arvense - Fire Effects Information System (FEIS)
USDA. FS. Rocky Mountain Research Station. Fire Sciences Laboratory.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Controls; Special Note: References

Managing Canada Thistle (2007; PDF | 793 KB)
USDA. NRCS. Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program; Pennsylvania State University.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Dispersion; Controls

PLANTS Database - Canada Thistle
USDA. NRCS. National Plant Data Center.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Distribution

Cirsium arvense - Species Abstracts of Highly Disruptive Exotic Plants at Effigy Mounds National Monument
DOI. Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center.
Identification/Description; Life Cycle; Habitat; Dispersion; Controls

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State Government

Cirsium genus - EncycloWeedia
California Department of Food and Agriculture.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Canada Thistle - Best Management Practices Weed Profile (PDF | 217 KB)
Colorado State Parks.
Identification/Description; Illustrations; Introduction History; Impacts; Habitat; Distribution; Controls; Special Note: References

Canada thistle - Noxious Weed Identification List
State of Colorado. Jefferson County. Weed and Pest Management Program.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Habitat; Controls

Canada Thistle - Vegetation Management Guideline
Illinois Nature Preserves Commission.
Identification-Description; Photographs; Impacts; Life cycle; Distribution; Controls

Kansas Plant Pest Alert: Canada Thistle (Apr 2011; PDF | 580 KB)
Kansas Department of Agriculture. Plant Protection and Weed Control Program.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Dispersion; Controls

Canada Thistle (PDF | 522 KB)
Nebraska Department of Agriculture. Plant Industry. Noxious Weed Program.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Impacts; Habitat; Distribution

Canada Thistle - Invasive Plants of Ohio
Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Natural Areas and Preserves.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Habitat; Distribution; Controls

Canada Thistle - Invasive Alien Plant Species of Virginia (PDF | 98 KB)
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. Natural Heritage Program and Virginia Native Plant Society.
Identification/Description; Illustrations; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Controls

Class C Noxious Weed: Canada Thistle
Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Impacts; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls; Legal Aspects

Canada Thistle
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
Identification/Distribution; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Habitat; Distribution; Control; Special Note: Scientific review and assessment (PDF | 50 KB)

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University/Academic

Canada thistle - Invasive Plant Species of Alaska (PDF | 142 KB)
University of Alaska - Anchorage. Alaska Natural Heritage Program.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Impacts; Life Cycle; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Cirsium arvense (Canada thistle) - Invasive Plant Atlas of New England (IPANE)
University of Connecticut. Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Canada Thistle
Colorado State University. Cooperative Extension.
Identification/Description; Illustrations; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Dispersion; Controls

Canada Thistle - Invasive Plant Atlas of the United States
University of Georgia. Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Distribution

Control Practices for Canada Thistle
Purdue University. Botany and Plant Pathology.
Photographs; Life Cycle; Controls

Canada Thistle - Noxious Weeds of Nebraska
University of Nebraska - Lincoln. Cooperative Extension.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Life Cycle; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Canada Thistle Wanted Poster--Dead, Not Alive! (PDF | 211KB)
University of Nevada - Reno. Cooperative Extension.
Identification/Description; Photographs

Canada Thistle - Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide
Ohio State University. Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History

Canada Thistle - Virginia Tech Weed Identification Guide
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Plant Pathology, Physiology, and Weed Science.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Life Cycle

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International

Cirsium arvense - Invasive Species Compendium
Centre for Agricultural Bioscience International (CABI).
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Controls

Canada Thistle (PDF | 224 KB)
Alberta Invasive Plants Council (Canada).
Identification/Description; Photographs; Illustrations; Controls

Canada Thistle - Guide to Weeds in British Columbia
British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture Food and Fisheries (Canada).
Identification/Description; Photographs; Illustrations; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Cirsium arvense (herb) - ISSG Global Invasive Species Database
World Conservation Union. Invasive Species Specialist Group.
Taxonomy; Identification/Description; Photographs; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Controls

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Organizations

Canada Thistle - Invasive Exotics (PDF | 269 KB)
Bowman's Hill Wildflower Preserve (Pennsylvania).
Illustrations; Impacts; Dispersion; Controls

Cirsium arvense - Invasive Plants of California's Wildlands Book (2000)
California Invasive Plant Council.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Illustrations; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Canada Thistle
Colorado Weed Management Association.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion

Cirsium arvense
Discover Life.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Canada Thistle
Montana Weed Control Association.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Dispersion; Controls

Candian Thistle - BioBullies (Western Pennsylvania)
Natural Biodiversity.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Life Cycle; Habitat; Controls

Canada Thistle
Plant Conservation Alliance. Alien Plant Working Group.
Identification/Description; Photographs; Introduction History; Impacts; Habitat; Distribution; Dispersion; Controls

Citations

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

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

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: Jul 01, 2014
 
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