Iberian Star Thistle
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Iberian Star Thistle
ative Photo: Gurcharan Singh
Common name: Iberian Star Thistle, Iberian Knapweed
Botanical name: Centaurea iberica    Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower family)

Iberian Star Thistle is a perennial herb 20-80 cm tall, commonly found in Kashmir. It is also found in east and south Europe, hence the common name Iberian Star Thistle. Lower leaves are pinnately lobed - lobes are widely space, lanceshaped, toothed. Middle and upper leaves are either unlobed or have few lobes. Flowers-heads are purple with an ovoid cup with prominently long, spreading thorns. Flower-heads are 1.3-2 cm across, excluding the spines. They consist of only disk-florets. Bracts are ovate, with narrow papery margin and a stout spine, 1-2.5 cm long, at the tip. Iberian Star Thistle is found at altitudes of 300-2000 m. Flowering: June-July.

Identification credit: Gurcharan Singh Photographed in Pampore, Kashmir.

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