this·​tle | \ ˈthi-səl How to pronounce thistle (audio) \

Definition of thistle

: any of various prickly composite plants (especially genera Carduus, Cirsium, and Onopordum) with often showy heads of mostly tubular flowers also : any of various other prickly plants

Illustration of thistle

Illustration of thistle

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Other Words from thistle

thistly \ ˈthi-​s(ə-​)lē How to pronounce thistly (audio) \ adjective

Examples of thistle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Alternately, try safflower or thistle seeds, which squirrels don’t particularly like. Arricca Elin Sansone, House Beautiful, "How to Attract More Birds to Your Garden This Winter," 28 Oct. 2019 The following year, our 60 acres of creeping thistle had vanished entirely. Isabella Tree, Time, "How to Return a Farm to the Wild—And Maybe Save the Planet," 3 Oct. 2019 This week in the garden Apply a pre-emergent herbicide such as Dimension or Amaze to your lawn to prevent the germination of winter weeds such as bedstraw, henbit, thistle, beggar’s lice, annual bluegrass and rescue grass. Calvin Finch,, "Now is the time to spread wildflower seed in your San Antonio garden," 6 Sep. 2019 This week in the garden Apply a pre-emergent herbicide such as Amaze or Dimension now to prevent winter weeds such as thistle, dandelion, bedstraw, henbit, rescue grass and annual bluegrass. Calvin Finch,, "Fall blooms to attract butterflies and hummingbirds to your San Antonio garden," 13 Sep. 2019 Some of the plants that have grown this year — invasive mustard and thistle — die quickly and turn into dry fuel, said Fire Marshal James Brown. Daily Pilot, "Laguna Beach calls on a third herd of goats to eat up dry brush," 28 Aug. 2019 Plans also include removing invasive plants, including artichoke thistle, pampas grass and ice plant, on about four acres of the preserve and replacing them with native vegetation such as Dudleya multicaulis, a perennial succulent. Lilly Nguyen, Daily Pilot, "Coastal Commission OKs habitat restoration plan for Laguna Beach preserve that will close unauthorized trail," 12 Sep. 2019 This week in the garden To reduce or prevent the germination of winter weeds such as bedstraw, thistle, dandelion, beggar’s lice, rescue grass, henbit, and annual bluegrass apply a pre-emergent herbicide such as Dimension, Amaze, or XL now. Calvin Finch,, "Yeah, it feels wrong, but it’s time to plant your winter vegetables," 30 Aug. 2019 And for the first lady, the British monarch commissioned a silver box with an enamel lid featuring rose, thistle, and shamrock details that were inspired by the ceiling decorations of the Music Room of the palace. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "Queen Elizabeth Gives Donald Trump a First-Edition Copy of Churchill’s World War II Book," 3 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'thistle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of thistle

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for thistle

Middle English thistel, from Old English; akin to Old High German distill thistle

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Statistics for thistle

Last Updated

18 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for thistle

The first known use of thistle was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for thistle


How to pronounce thistle (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of thistle

: a wild plant that has sharp points on its leaves and purple, yellow, or white flowers


this·​tle | \ ˈthi-səl How to pronounce thistle (audio) \

Kids Definition of thistle

: a prickly plant that has usually purplish often showy heads of flowers

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More from Merriam-Webster on thistle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with thistle

Spanish Central: Translation of thistle

Nglish: Translation of thistle for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about thistle

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