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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Biology of Bull Thistle, Cirsium Vulgare (Savi) Tenore

Authors
item Forcella, Frank
item Randall, J - THE NATURE CONSERVANCY

Submitted to: Weed Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: February 20, 1994
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Understanding the biology of a weed provides many insights into new and safer ways of managing such a species. For this reason, all of the available English-language literature concerning bull thistle was reviewed. Topics discussed included this plant's status as a pest (primarily a weed of pastures); distribution; environmental regulation of germination, growth, flowering, seed production, seed dispersal, and population fluctuations; causes of death; insect pollinators and herbivores; microbial pathogens; and agents for chemical, biological, and mechanical control. Synthesizing the world literature on bull thistle allowed development of several novel hypotheses regarding the regulation of this weed's densities by weather-related events. Best management practices in grazed pastures in the future will consider these weather events when planning control operations.

Technical Abstract: We reviewed all of the available English-language literature on bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare (Savi) Tenore). Topics covered included this plant's status as a pest (primarily a weed of pastures); distribution, environmental regulation of germination, growth, flowering, seed production, seed dispersal, and population fluctuations; causes of death; insect pollinators and herbivores; microbial pathogens; and agents for chemical, biological, and mechanical control. Synthesizing the world literature on bull thistle allowed development of several novel hypotheses regarding the regulation of this weed's densities by weather-related events. Best management practices in grazed pastures in the future need to consider these weather events when planning control operations.

Last Modified: 8/27/2014
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