Flicker’s Lair Blog


by Heidi on August 26th, 2010
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I have often been told by friends who raise sheep that I should get rid of the thistles in our fields. While it is true that thistles get caught up in the fleece and are a real pain to remove, we prefer to try to live alongside nature rather than ‘against’ it.

Thistles are beautiful ….


… and they are an important food source for many creatures …

Thistle & Great spangled fritillary butterfly Thistle with bumblebees

Whenever I go out to the field the thistles are always full of bees, dragonflies, butterflies and gold finches along with many other beneficial bugs. So we choose to enjoy them and spend a little longer cleaning fleeces.

This post is mostly for my Dad, enjoy the thistles & bugs! But is also part of …

Photobucket Give me your best shot

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  1. Beautiful Photos of the thistles! You know if you pick thistles while they are still purple then they will dry purple. They are really striking dried in a vase!

    Comment by kristen — August 26, 2010 @ 11:14 am

  2. For some reason, thistles make me think of Eeyore – which is a good thing. :-) Great pictures!

    Comment by Carrie — August 26, 2010 @ 11:33 am

  3. Kristen, I didn’t know that. I will have to go out and pick a couple. Thanks for the tip.

    Carrie, I love Eeyore too!

    Comment by Heidi — August 26, 2010 @ 11:34 am

  4. They can also be used as a dye plant, however I’d rather leave them to the bees and bugs!

    Comment by Chriss — August 26, 2010 @ 11:50 am

  5. Down here thistles are classified as a “noxious weed,” so it is against the law to let them grow. Not that there’s any real policing to monitor it, but we try to abide by the law anyway.

    Comment by Michelle — August 26, 2010 @ 12:35 pm

  6. Michelle, wow, are they an invasive species there then?

    Chriss, we have so many here I am sure the bugs could spare a couple. How do I use them for dyeing?

    Comment by Heidi — August 26, 2010 @ 12:43 pm

  7. Wonderful pictures.

    Comment by Chrystal — August 26, 2010 @ 12:48 pm

  8. I’ll have to remember that tip about picking them and drying them. They grow all over the place here in Germany too. Major problem on our orchard! Grow so thick you can’t get through in some places…

    Comment by Tiffany @ No Ordinary Homestead — August 26, 2010 @ 1:27 pm

  9. For me, bees are a necessary evil and you would never catch me taking a photograph of one, let alone four. You did a beautiful job though. Never thought of thistles as beautiful before, but now I do.

    Comment by Jennifer Lavender — August 26, 2010 @ 1:35 pm

  10. I really love the contrast of the thistle against the sky in the first photo. So pretty!

    Comment by Jaime — August 26, 2010 @ 8:32 pm

  11. Very pretty! Love that purple.

    Comment by Austin-Lee — August 26, 2010 @ 10:06 pm

  12. I completely agree, I think our thistles are just beautiful too. I tried to get some shots of the bees on them last week… but it was so windy and my depth of field was so narrow, I trashed them all. Thank goodness for digital! But YOURS are gorgeous, love the blue sky background in the first one. Great job!

    Comment by Jess — August 27, 2010 @ 8:06 am

  13. very cool photos

    Comment by Tiaras & Tantrums — August 27, 2010 @ 11:01 am

  14. Ohhh…I love your pics! We dont have thistles here, so I cant give an honest opinion on them…but they sure look pretty!

    Comment by CJ — August 27, 2010 @ 12:00 pm

  15. I love your thistle shots. They’re beautiful in themselves but when they’re teaming with bees and butterflies, they’re even more spectacular!

    Comment by Stillmary — August 27, 2010 @ 12:37 pm

  16. So funny… I was told all of the same things about thistles as a kid. AND, I always loved the purple flowers. Beautiful picture with the butterfly. Thanks for stopping by my blog!

    Comment by Tiffany — August 27, 2010 @ 3:08 pm

  17. They are a beautiful nuisance! You have captured the so wonderfully.

    Comment by Carrie Keiser — August 29, 2010 @ 12:20 am

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