Centaurea benedicta (L.) L.

Blessed Thistle

Sp. Pl. , edn 2, 2: 1296 (1763) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Extinct

Establishment means:Introduced

Erect annual to 60 cm high. Basal leaves petiolate, oblong, to 30 cm long, 8 cm wide, pinnatifid, often runcinate, pubescent with stiff multicellular hairs; cauline leaves becoming sessile and smaller upwards, narrowly elliptic in outline, pinnatifid, acute to obtuse. Capitula solitary, subtended and surrounded by involucre-like cluster of foliar bracts, ovoid, 20–40 mm diam.; involucre to c. 20 mm long; intermediate bracts elliptic to lanceolate, villous, with a purple or straw-coloured, rigid, pectinate, spiny terminal appendage to 35 mm long; inner involucral bracts longer with a shorter terminal appendage. Corolla 19–24 mm long, yellow. Cypselas 8–11 mm long, brown, with 20 prominent ribs; apex with a ring of 10 broad teeth; pappus of unequal bristles to 10 mm long. Flowering spring–summer.

Native to the Mediterranean region and Asia Minor. In Victoria known from five collections made over 100 years ago in the north-east around Chiltern, Wangaratta and Myrtleford.

Created by: Daniel Ohlsen, 2015-09-18
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2019-01-08
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Asteranae
order Asterales
family Asteraceae
genus Centaurea
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <http://avh.chah.org.au>. Find Centaurea benedicta in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Centaurea benedicta in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Riverina extinct introduced

State distribution

Distribution map
New South Wales