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Echinops sphaerocephalus

Globe thistle

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Key information

Plant type

Hardy perennial

Flower colour



Flowers, Dramatic foliage, Attractive to wildlife



Skill level


photo by Jan Smith, copyright GAP Photos (201971)

Plant details

Echinops is a bold perennial with spiky leaves and spherical, pale, off-white flowers. It makes a great architectural plant for the back of a summer border. The spiny, dark-green, cobwebbed leaves, with silver undersides provide interest from spring until the blooms appear in late summer. It associates well with other tall striking late summer plants such as cardoon and echinacea or tall miscanthus grasses.

Family: Asteraceae

Genus: Echinops

Species: sphaerocephalus

Plant type: Hardy perennial

Flower colour: White

Foliage colour: Dark green

Feature: Flowers, Dramatic foliage, Attractive to wildlife

Sun exposure: Full sun

Soil: Well-drained/light, Clay/heavy, Moist, Sandy

Hardiness: Hardy

Skill level: Beginner

Height: 150cm

Spread: 100cm

Time to divide plants: October to November

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