The Scotch thistle adds architectural drama to the Mediterranean Beds.
The daisy Onopordum acanthium originates from Europe and central Asia, where it thrives in sunny, well-drained conditions. It is a biennial species, which self-seeds freely to produce rosettes of spine-toothed, grey-haired leaves, from the centre of which emerge woolly, branched stems. Each branch will bear either individuals, or small clusters, of thistle-like flowers, in which each globe-like flower head is encased in a woolly, spine-tipped, involucral bract. O. acanthium is one of 40 species within the genus belonging to the Asteraceae.