Wild Safflower
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Wild Safflower
ative Photo: Samir Takaochi
Common name: Wild Safflower, Jeweled Distaff Thistle • Kannada: Kaadu kusabi gida, Mullu shaavanthi • Urdu: Peeli Kusum ﭘﻴﻠﯽ ﻛﹹﺴﹹﻢ
Botanical name: Carthamus oxyacanthus    Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower family)
Synonyms: Carthamus flavescens, Carthamus oxyacantha

Wild Safflower is a spiny-leaved annual herb, growing up to 1.5 m tall. It is closely related to Safflower. Like other spiny plants in the genus Carthamus, this species is not grazed by livestock, enabling it to spread on grazing lands. The genus name Carthamus comes from the Arabic name qartam for safflower. The yellow flowers grow in flower heads about 1-1.5 inches across. Leaves are covered with spines. Wild Safflower can be distinguished from the Safflower by the larger, pointed spines. The species name oxyacanthus means pointed spines.

Identification credit: Samir Takaochi Photographed in Dharuhera, Haryana.

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