Heirloom & Perennial Ltd

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Carduus nutans, Musk Thistle


The flowers, and indeed the whole plant, give off a pleasing musk-like perfume. The plant is very attractive to bees, hoverflies and butterflies, it is a food plant for the caterpillars of many lepidoptera species.

Succeeds in a sunny position in ordinary garden soil.

The down of the plant is used to make paper. The seed of all species of thistles yields a good oil by expression. This species contains 41 - 44% oil.

Edible uses

Pith of stem - boiled. A pleasant taste, it is eaten like asparagus. Said to be delicious. The dried flowers are used as a curdling agent for plant milks etc.


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