Common names: musk thistle; giant plumeless thistle; nodding (plumeless) thistle;
Carduus nutans (musk thistle) is a biennial or winter annual (family Asteraceae) found in disturbed open sites, roadsides, pastures, annual grasslands, and waste areas, but is mostly limited to the Klamath and Cascade Ranges, northern Sierra Nevada, and Modoc Plateau in California. Previous populations in southern California were eradicated.Cal-IPC Rating: Moderate
CDFA Rating: A*
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.
Species ID Card
Invasive Species ID Card - To support field identification of early detection species, Cal-IPC has designed a set of Species ID cards that can be downloaded, printed double-sided, and trimmed to size.
Weed 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
- Weeds and climate resilience in Sierra meadows. Brusati, Elizabeth; Johnson, Doug. Vol 24, Issue 1
- Weed biological control agents approved for California. Pitcairn, Michael J.; Smith, Lincoln; Moran, Patrick. Vol 22, Issue 1
- Prioritizing Regional Response to Invasive Plants in the Sierra Nevada. Brusati, Elizabeth; Morawitz, Dana; Powell, Cynthia. Vol 19, Issue 2
- Fighting weeds in the Tahoe basin. Donaldson, Sue. Vol 11, Issue 2
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.
- Getting the job done: Working within the regulatory environment at Lake Tahoe to manage weeds. Donaldson, Susan; West, Wendy; Taylor, Kirk (2003)
- Hydrilla: A case study: The state of California’s noxious weed eradication programs. O'Connell, Ross A. (1997)
- Risk analysis of various weed control methods. DiTomaso, Joseph M. (1997)
- Using Transline* herbicide to control invasive plants. Carrithers, Vanelle F. (1997)
- Use of biologically based methods to control pest plants:Issues related to federal research, regulation, and implementation. Chornesky, Elizabeth A.; Palmer, Cynthia M. (1995)
Other Carduus nutans 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.
- Bugwood - National database from the Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health at the University of Georgia.
- EDDMapS - North American distribution based on Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System.