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Soft and Prickly for Macro Saturday

National emblem of Scotland the Onopordon Acanthium or otherwise called Scotch Thistle, Cotton Thistle or Scott's Thistle grows up to 7ft tall in my garden.  My husband is very fond of this plant so I let him keep one and I compost the siblings.  One is enough.   From a first year rosette of silvery-white foliage this plant becomes spiny in its second year.  It flowers the second year and produces seed to start anew all over.   The blooms on it are quite beautiful purple.
Legend has it that Norsemen trying to sneak up on the Scots soldiers took their shoes off so they could not be heard moving up the shore.   One of the Norse stood on a thistle and let out a shout of pain spoiling the surprise attack.  The Scots handily sent them on their way back to where they came from.

The Calla Lily grown here  in a container is a bulb or rhizome. This one is a soft yellow shade.  I took the shot just after it had stopped raining here.  We had a lovely rain this morning that we really needed after 4 or 5 intensely hot days.  The Calla is not really a lily at all but a relative of the Calla family.  It is native to South Africe.  Callas are most popular as flower in a Wedding bouguet.  In the fall after the first frost I dig them up and shake off all the dirt, let them dry out and store away in some wood shavings for the winter.   In the spring I start them up in the container and move them outside when all risk of frost is gone.

To see more macros photos visit or click HERE.   Have a great weekend.  Valerie


Crafty Gardener said…
A friend gave a clump of Scotch Thistle in the spring, so I'm hoping it will take. Your photo is wonderful.
maiaT said…
Both flowers are beautiful Valerie. I've learned to appreciate the beauty of thistles lately, so I can understand your husband.
I love those two water drops on your beautiful Calla Lily.
What a great story about the thistles and Norsmen.
The pictures are stunning.
I like that thistle. I grow globe thistle. I have to pull seedlings out, too.

That was an interesting story about the soldier stepping on one.
Flower Town said…
Oh yeah, they do have a similarity with what I posted...I thought it is of the same family? Thanks for the info Valerie.
Jenn said…
That is one great shot of the thistle!

I also joined the Flower Macro Saturday and my post is up HERE.
We have loads of different thistles around here the part of Scotland I live in growing wild - thankfully most are alot smaller than the one you grow in your garden.
I'm so admiring your Thistle as I've taken lots of photos of it this year, too. Here in Texas it grows wild along side the road ways and in the pastures. It's usually full of bees and I love the color of the pod in every stage of development. I've never seen a more lovely photo of the calla lily! Beautiful!
Manang Kim said…
I saw scotch thistle in another blog too and I am so glad you knew the name ^_^. These flowers are beautiful!! Thanks for sharing!

White peonies
I'm loving the unique flowers I'm seeing today. That is wonderful and the cala lily with those water droplets, just beautiful
Icy BC said…
I have wild thistle growing in the yard too, with the same color, but the top of the flower head taller than yours. Wonder if they are in the same family?
Georgianna said…
Beautiful images, Valerie. I love the story of the thistle! I'm also glad to learn how you overwinter the calla lilies. We had several when we first moved in but I'm afraid I've killed them off. Hope your new week is wonderful!
Dave said…
one word - exquisite.

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