What is this? August 30, 2012 by kk704 I keep finding this plant in various meadows but can’t find anything in the books that look like it. Very spiny, thistle like leaves. Comments One thought on “What is this?” Karl Anderson said: Boy, that brings back memories of poking around in the fields of Sussex and Morris Counties. Looks like carline thistle, Carlina vulgaris. Not native, but not invasive so far as I know. From what you say, it’s more common now than it was twenty years ago. I only saw it maybe two or three times. Those bracts around the flower will close up over the flower in wet weather – have you noticed that? Keep finding plants like that and you’ll lose your amateur status! Both Newcomb’s and Peterson’s field guides are good, but with only about 1400 species in each they can’t include everything. I once compiled a list of over 400 wildflowers that could be found in the New York area (including South Jersey) that are not in either book. Karl A. Leave a Reply Cancel reply You must be logged in to post a comment.