Centaurea calcitrapa

Centaurea calcitrapa_purple starthistle_flowering head_JM DiTomaso
Photo courtesy Joseph DiTomaso

Common names: purple starthistle

Centaurea calcitrapa (purple starthistle) grows as an annual, biennial or perennial (family Asteraceae) in fields, roadsides, disturbed open sites, grasslands, overgrazed rangelands, and logged areas in the northern and central coast ranges of California. Centaurea species may produce allelopathic effects and are highly competitive with other plants, often displacing desired vegetation.

Cal-IPC Rating: Moderate

Cal-IPC Assessment

Plant Assessment Form - Information gathered by Cal-IPC on the impacts, rate of spread, and distribution of invasive plants in California. Does not include management information.

Weed RIC Management Notes

  • Management Notes - Information on management techniques and effectiveness from the University of California Cooperative Extension’s Weed Research & Information Center.

Cal-IPC Newsletter Articles

Cal-IPC Symposium Presentations

Presentations are linked where available. Where a presentation is not available, find more information by reading the abstract in the Cal-IPC Symposia Archive.

There are no Symposium presentations associated with this species yet.

Other Centaurea calcitrapa Information

  • CalPhotos - Images of plants taken mostly in California.
  • Calflora - See the distribution of this species on Calflora's map of California.
  • CalWeedMapper - Distribution information with ability to determine regional priorities.
  • Jepson Online Interchange for California Flora - Information on taxonomy, biology, and distribution from UC Berkeley's Jepson Herbarium.
  • CDFA - California official noxious weeds.
  • USDA PLANTS Database - Federal database with information on identification and distribution, and links to websites in individual states.