This delightful thistle can be found on the Mediterranean Beds.
Growing to approximately 100cm in height, this annual or biennial species brings early summer interest to the garden. A downy, white stem erupts from white-veined, spiny-tipped, lower leaves to produce a lax cluster of rose-purple flower heads, each emerging from a spiny, webbed involucral bract. It is the white markings on the veins of the foliage which give rise to the common name purple milk thistle. Occurring on waste ground and uncultivated areas in the Mediterranean, this species flourishes in a sunny position in poor, shallow, rocky soils, and self-seeds readily.