Palmeran Sow Thistles (Sonchus palmensis)

Sonchus Palmensis - Canarian sow thistle or ballistic dandelions on La Palma
Sonchus Palmensis – Canarian sow thistle or ballistic dandelionsa

Sow thistles look rather like a dandelion gone ballistic. That is, the individual flowers look much like dandelions, but they’re growing on a shrub anything up to 2 m (6 ft) tall. And now they’re flowing all over the island, especially on the east, up to about 1,000 ft. Like so many other plants here, La Palma has a different species from everywhere else – Sonchus palmensis.

The local names are cerraja or lechuguilla.

Sonchus Palmensis - Canarian sow thistle or ballistic dandelions
Sonchus Palmensis – Canarian sow thistle or ballistic dandelions

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