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Echinops ritro

Pronunciation: Ek-in-ops rih-tro
Family: Asteraceae/compositae (aster/daisy family
Common Name: Small globe thistle
Plant Type:
  • perennial
Height to: 2-3'
USDA Hardiness Zones:
  • -30 to -40ºF ZONE 3
  • -20 to -30ºF ZONE 4
  • -10 to -20ºF ZONE 5
  • 0 to -10ºF ZONE 6
  • 10 to 0ºF ZONE 7
  • 20 to 10ºF ZONE 8
  • 30 to 20ºF ZONE 9
  • 40 to 30ºF ZONE 10
Sun Exposure:
  • full sun
Bloom Season:
  • late summer
  • early autumn
Bloom Description: The spherical flowerheads are 1-2 in (2. 5-5. 1 cm) in diameter, silvery blue at first and maturing to bright blue. Within the flowerhead, the tiny tubular flowers are each surrounded by bristly silverish bracts that extend beyond the actual flowers, giving the head a spiny texture. The flower stems branch 2-6 times and each branch bears a single flowerhead.
Soil Type: The globe thistles are best grown on poor, sandy soils. In richer organic soils
Plant Perks:
  • Cut Flower
  • Attracts Butterflies
Propagation: Divide root clumps in winter, or sow seed in spring
Native to: Western asia and eastern europe from russia to southern france and spain.
Notes for Identification: Source: floridata care: with plenty of watering, they may grow so much as to require staking. If you cut flowerheads for dried arrangements early in the season the plants may bloom again. Once established, small globe thistle is moderately drought tolerant. The globe thistles are bold and rewarding perennials for herbaceous borders. Small globe thistle is especially useful in smaller gardens and in mixed flower plantings. The basal leaves tend to deteriorate, so conceal them with smaller plants that allow the colorful flowerheads to stand above. Globe thistle is valued for dried arrangements, but the flowerheads must be cut just before the tiny flowers are fully open. Dry quickly upside-down in a warm, airy environment, and they will retain their blue color. The repeat-blooming 'veitch's blue' is especially desirable for the cut flower garden. Bumblebees, moths and butterflies find the flowers irresistible.
Located in: Perennials
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