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The globe thistle resembles a weed until bloom time when the plant explodes with perfect steely blue spheres. This charmer looks like a peppy pom-pom in fresh arrangements. Snip a few for drying, and you'll enjoy globe thistle long after the growing season.
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1 to 3 feet
1 to 2 feet wide
garden plans for Globe thistle
Globe thistle offers one of the most beautiful blue colors in the plant world. The perfect spheres of flowers start as spiky balls atop long stems. As each steel blue bud opens, the spheres become covered in star-shaped, sky-blue blossoms. When they are fully open, these blossoms will bring in the pollinators.
Even the foliage of globe thistle is unique. While the plant may look like a weed when young, its coarse texture can add a unique look to the garden. The soft green of the leaves also accents nicely with bright white undersides, creating a bicolor effect.
If you are planning on drying globe thistle, the best time to cut them is just before they open.
Globe Thistle Care Must-Knows
The foliage of globe thistle looks like a weed, and the weed-likeness doesn't end there. This hardy plant doesn't just tolerate poor soil conditions, it prefers dry soils with little organic matter. In sites that are too rich, globe thistle can struggle.
Globe thistle needs full sun; any amount of shade runs the risk of developing floppy plants. Too much shade will discourage blooms on the plants, as well as a looser plant habit.
These plants produce a lot of seeds as they finish up their flower show, which means there's a good chance that they will self-seed in your garden. If you're worried about them overtaking, deadhead the spent flowers before they have time to scatter. However, you will miss out on some lovely late fall interest, as the globes look stunning when kissed with morning frost.