laugardagur, júní 24, 2006


The largest member of the thistle family. It is striking how many people do not know that the artichoke, uneaten, blooms into a huge, spiky, purple flower. It is almost sea-creature-like, some weird anemone or coral waving with delicate, hollow fronds. I believe it is a compound bloom, that each apparent petal is an entire flower complete with pistil and stamen and nectar.

Pace Joseph Harris ("Cursing with the Thistle: Skírnismál 316-8 and OE Metrical Charm 9, 16-17", in Neuphilogische Mitteilungen 76 (1975), pp.26-33), but these thistles seem to me bursting with fecundity.

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