Salsola paulsenii

Photo courtesy Joseph DiTomaso

Synonyms: formerly considered part of Russian thistle species (Salsola iberica or Salsola tragus)

Common names: barbwire Russian thistle

Salsola paulsenii (barbwire Russian thistle) is a bushy annual (family Chenopodiaceae) found throughout the Mojave Desert of California. It prefers loose, sandy soils in desert scrub and disturbed areas, such as roadsides and cultivated fields. Barbwire Russian thistle is easily confused with Russian thistle (Salsola tragus), and the two species can hybridize, making a plant that looks like a mix between the two species. Both species reproduce using seeds which can only survive for up to two years in the soil. Cultivation can effectively control barbwire Russian thistle seedlings, but must be repeated until all seeds in the seedbank loose viability.

Rating: Limited

Cal-IPC Resources

  • 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.
  • CalWeedMapper - Statewide maps, climate models, and reports.
  • Cal-IPC News - Our quarterly newsletter. Each issue is available as a pdf.
  • Cal-IPC Symposium Proceedings - Presentations and papers from our annual Symposium.
  • Don't Plant a Pest! - Select your region to find non-invasive alternatives to ornamental species. Also see our statewide brochure on trees.

Other Resources

Symposium Presentations

None for this species.

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