Cirsium (Carduoideae- Cynareae)


Cirsium argyracanthum DC. (Images by Nidhan Singh (Id by Gurcharan Singh) (Inserted by J.M.Garg) (For more photos & complete details, click on the links))- C. argyracanthum DC. which is treated as synonym of C. verutum in Flowers of Himal and Nepal Plants but is distinct in white heads (FBI) and treated distinct even by The Plant List.

Cirsium arvense (L.) Scop. (Images by Karuna Kanta Das (Validation by Nidhan Singh), Gurcharan Singh, D S RawatP. Santhan & Alok Goyal (Id by Gurcharan Singh)  (Inserted by J.M.Garg) (For more photos & complete details, click on the links))

(SE-Tibet, China (SW-Yunnan), India (Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur), Bhutan as per Catalogue of Life)

Cirsium shansiense Petr. (China (Anhui, Chongqing, SE-Fujian, S-Gansu, NE-Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hebei, Henan, Hubei, S-Hunan, NW-Jiangxi, Nei Mongol, E-Qinghai, S-Shaanxi, Shanxi, Sichuan, Yunnan), NE-Tibet, India (NE-India, NW-Himalaya, Meghalaya), Myanmar [Burma], Bhutan, ?Vietnam as per Catalogue of Life)


Cirsium verutum (D.Don) Spreng. (Images by Gurcharan Singh, Aarti S Khale (Id by Gurcharan Singh), D S Rawat & Satish Phadke (Id by Tabish) (Inserted by J.M.Garg) (For more photos & complete details, click on the links))- As per efi thread :  The plant (Cirsium verutum) is differentiated from related species C. wallichii by its usually purplish flowers (though white ones should also be expected if we follow FBI and Collett), outer as well as inner involucre bracts ending in spines longer than 5 mm.

Images by Gurcharan Singh (Inserted by J.M.Garg) (For more photos & complete details, click on the links)

Chitra Shanker (Id by Gurcharan Singh)

FLOWERING PLANTS OF INDIA, DICOTYLEDONS, Vol-I (Acanthaceae-Avicenniaceae) authored by S. Karthikeyan, M. Sanjappa and S. Moorthy and published by BSI, Kolkata in 2009 is an important document for names, authority and distribution of Asteraceae species in India.
As per this document (Karthikeyan et al., 2009) following species of Cirsium occur in India:
  1. Cirsium argyracanthum DC.
  2. C. arvense (L.) Scop.
  3. C. chinense Gardner & Champ. [synonym of C. lineare (Thunb.) Sch. Bip.]
  4. C. eriophoroides (Hook.f.) Petr.
  5. C. falconeri (Hook.f.) Petr. [var. falconeri; var. horrida]
  6. C. flavisquamatum Kitam.
  7. C. interpositum Petr.
  8. C. involucratum DC. [synonym of C. verutum (D. Don) Spreng.]
  9. C. nishiokae Kitam.
  10. C. phulchokiense Kitam.
  11. C. shansiense Petr.
  12. C. souliei (Franch.) Mattf.
  13. C. tibeticum Kitam.
  14. C. verutum (D.Don) Spreng.
  15. C. wallichii DC. [var. wallichii; var. cernua; var. fasciculata; var. glabrata; var. nepalensis; var. platylepis; var. wightii]
Scrutiny of these names in Plant List indicate two of them as synonyms as mentioned above.

From Floral Database of Tamilnadu :  
Cirsium wallichii DC. var. wightii (Hook.f.) Vivek. is a synonym of Cirsium wallichii DC.HerbEvergreen Forests, Open areas Flora of Tamil Nadu, VOL. II, 1987Dindigul, Nilgiri


Species with description & pictures in Flowers of India as on 20.4.14: 

Botanical nameSynonymsFamilyCommon name
Cirsium arvense Carduus arvensis, Serratula setosa, Cirsium setosumAsteraceae Creeping Thistle
Cirsium eriophoroides Asteraceae Wool Bearing Thistle
Cirsium falconeri Asteraceae Falconer's Thistle
Cirsium verutum Cirsium argyracanthum, Cirsium involucratum, Cnicus argyracanthusAsteraceae Common Thistle
Cirsium wallichii Cirsium nepalense, Cnicus wallichiiAsteraceae Wallich's Thistle

  • Cirsium falconeri (Hook. f.) Petr. (3000-4300 m; Himalaya (Kashmir to Bhutan), Burma, S. Tibet)
  • Cirsium flavisquamatum Kitam. (3300 m; Nepal)
  • Cirsium nishiokae Kitam. (3300 m; Nepal)
  • Cirsium phulchokiense Kitam. (1300-1500 m; Nepal)
  • Cirsium tibeticum Kitam. (3000 m; Himalaya (Nepal to Bhutan), Tibet)
  • Cirsium verutum (D. Don) Spreng. (750-2200 m; Afghanistan, Pakistan, Himalaya (Muree to Bhutan))
  • Cirsium wallichii DC.
  • Cirsium wallichii var. glabratum (Hook. f.) Wendelbo (1400-3500 m; Afghanistan, Chitral, Himalaya, China)
  • Cirsium wallichii var. wallichii DC. (2200 m; Himalaya (Nepal to Bhutan))

    Some species found in India with description & keys from Flora of China :

    Cirsium argyracanthum [Bhutan, China, India, Nepal, Pakistan].

    Cirsium arvense var. arvense [Afghanistan, China, India, Kazakhstan, Nepal; SW Asia, Europe].

    Cirsium eriophoroides [Bhutan, China, India (Sikkim)].

    Cirsium glabrifolium [India, China, Kashmir, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan].
    Cirsium lineare [China, Japan, NE Thailand, Vietnam].
    Cirsium shansiense [Bhutan, China, India, Myanmar, Vietnam].
    Cirsium souliei [China, India (Sikkim)].
    Cirsium verutum [Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Vietnam].
    Forest Plants of Eastern India By Amal Bhusan Chaudhuri (1993)_
    Cirsium : 4 posts by 2 authors.

    I have updated eFI (efloraofindia) page on Cirsium

    Attempts have been made to incorporate most of the species available in India & nearby areas with details & keys directly or through links as far as possible. It’s quite possible that there may be some discrepancy in the accepted names & synonyms taken from other links.

    Species discussed so far in efloraofindia are given at the bottom of the page in the form of links against Subpages. On clicking them one can see all the details.

    If someone can provide complete list of Indian species with source references it will be wonderful.

    Any comments/ corrections are welcome.
    I have added the list of species known in India based on Karthikeyan et al. 2009.
    Names in other links matches well with it.
    FOC also specifies Cirsium glabrifolium to have range in India, which is not listed in Karthikeyan et al. 2009.
    Any reasons ?
    Yes it is not mentioned in Karthikeyan et al. 2009. Reasons unknown to me.

    Pl. go through Cirsium (‎‎‎‎‎Asteraceae (Compositae)‎) page with images of species (done by me) in efloraofindia.

    If you find any mis-identification, pl. let us know. If anybody can send images of other species of this genera (for incorporation in the website), if any, it will be really nice.

    Also, if anybody is interested to take up the activity of inserting images on efloraofindia pages from efloraofindia posts, pl. let us know.