Salsola tragus L.
PRICKLY RUSSIAN THISTLE
Russian Thistle; Tumbleweed
Life   Plantae   Dicotyledoneae   Chenopodiaceae   Salsola

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Salsola tragus
© Copyright Mel Harte 2010 · 3
Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
© Copyright Mel Harte 2010 · 3
Salsola tragus

Salsola tragus
© Copyright Mel Harte 2010 · 3
Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
© Copyright Mel Harte 2010 · 3
Salsola tragus

Salsola tragus
© Copyright Jennifer Larson 2012 · 2
Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
© Copyright Jennifer Larson 2012 · 2
Salsola tragus

Salsola tragus
© Copyright Jennifer Larson 2012 · 2
Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus, seed
© Copyright Seeds USID 2015 · 1
Salsola tragus, seed

Associates · map
FamilyScientific name @ source (records)
Andrenidae  Andrena piperi @ BBSL (3)

Calliopsis scutellaris @ BBSL (3)

Perdita calloleuca @ BBSL (4)

Perdita wilmattae @ BBSL (1)

Perdita zebrata @ BBSL (2)

Protandrena boylei @ BBSL (1)

Pseudopanurgus aethiops @ BBSL (1)
Apidae  Anthophorula crenulata @ BBSL (3)

Diadasia enavata @ BBSL (1)
Colletidae  Colletes mandibularis @ BBSL (1)

Colletes phaceliae @ BBSL (1)
Diaporthaceae  Diaporthe eres @ BPI (1)
Dictyopharidae  Scolops robustus @ AMNH_IZC (1)
Glomerellaceae  Colletotrichum gloeosporioides @ BPI (3)
Halictidae  Agapostemon angelicus @ BBSL (4)

Agapostemon femoratus @ BBSL (7)
Pleosporaceae  Pleospora lecanora @ BPI (2)
Pucciniaceae  Uromyces salsolae @ BPI (1)

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You are here: Home / Plant Profile

Salsola tragus L.
prickly Russian thistle

Image of Salsola tragus

General Information
Symbol: SATR12
Group: Dicot
Family: Chenopodiaceae
Duration: Annual
Growth Habit : Forb/herb
Native Status : CAN   I
HI   I
L48   I
Other Common Names: tumbleweed
Plant Guide (pdf) (doc)
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green round image for nativity Native blue round image for introduced Introduced ocre round image for introduced and nativity Both white round image for no status Absent/Unreported
image for native, but no county data Native, No County Data image for introduced, but no county data Introduced, No County Data both introduced and native, but no county data Both, No County Data
Native Status:
lower 48 status L48    Alaska status AK    Hawaii status HI    Puerto Rico status PR    Virgin Islands status VI    Navassa Island NAV    Canada status CAN    Greenland status GL    Saint Pierre and Michelon status SPM    North America NA   

Images

click on a thumbnail to view an image, or see all the Salsola thumbnails at the Plants Gallery

©J.S. Peterson. USDA NRCS National Plant Data Center (NPDC). United States, UT, Grand Co., Cisco vicinity. July 15, 2001. Usage Requirements .

©J.S. Peterson. USDA NRCS National Plant Data Center (NPDC). United States, UT, Grand Co., Cisco vicinity. July 15, 2001. Usage Requirements .

©J.S. Peterson. USDA NRCS National Plant Data Center (NPDC). United States, UT, Grand Co., Cisco vicinity. July 15, 2001. Usage Requirements .

©Al Schneider. Southwest Colorado Wildflowers . United States, CO, NM, AZ, UT, Four Corners vicinity, within 150 miles of the corners. Usage Requirements .

©Al Schneider. Southwest Colorado Wildflowers . United States, CO, NM, AZ, UT, Four Corners vicinity, within 150 miles of the corners. Usage Requirements .

Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 vols. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. Vol. 2: 25. Provided by Kentucky Native Plant Society . Scanned by Omnitek Inc . Usage Requirements .

slideshow

Synonyms

Symbol Scientific Name
SAAU3 Salsola australis R. Br.
SAIB Salsola iberica (Sennen & Pau) Botsch. ex Czerep.
SAKAR Salsola kali L. ssp. ruthenica (Iljin) SoĆ³
SAKAT6 Salsola kali L. ssp. tenuifolia Moq.
SAKAT3 Salsola kali L. ssp. tragus (L.) Celak.
SAPE10 Salsola pestifer A. Nelson
SARU10 Salsola ruthenica Iljin

Classification

Click on a scientific name below to expand it in the PLANTS Classification Report.
Rank Scientific Name and Common Name
Kingdom Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass Caryophyllidae
Order Caryophyllales
Family Chenopodiaceae – Goosefoot family
Genus Salsola L. – Russian thistle
Species Salsola tragus L. – prickly Russian thistle

Subordinate Taxa

This plant has no children

Legal Status

Noxious Weed Information
This plant is listed by the U.S. federal government or a state. Common names are from state and federal lists. Click on a place name to get a complete noxious weed list for that location, or click here for a composite list of all Federal and State Noxious Weeds .
Arkansas Salsola
thistle Noxious weed
California common Russianthistle C list (noxious weeds)
Ohio Salsola kali ssp. tenuifolia Russian thistle Prohibited noxious weed
U.S. Weed Information
Salsola Salsola tragus Russian thistle prickly Russian thistle thistle tumbleweed tumbling thistle Salsola iberica Russian thistle
prickly Russian thistle
tumbleweed
tumbling thistle
Salsola kali ssp. tenuifolia Russian thistle
tumbleweed
This plant and the related entities and synonyms italicized and indented above can be weedy or invasive according to the authoritative sources noted below.This plant may be known by one or more common names in different places, and some are listed above. Click on an acronym to view each weed list, or click here for a composite list of Weeds of the U.S.
STATE Assorted authors. State noxious weed lists for 46 states . State agriculture or natural resource departments.
NE&GP Stubbendieck, J., G.Y. Friisoe,and M.R. Bolick. 1994. Weeds of Nebraska and the Great Plains . Nebraska Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Plant Industry. Lincoln, Nebraska.
SWSS Southern Weed Science Society. 1998. Weeds of the United States and Canada. CD-ROM . Southern Weed Science Society. Champaign, Illinois.
WSWS Whitson, T.D. (ed.) et al.. 1996. Weeds of the West . Western Society of Weed Science in cooperation with Cooperative Extension Services, University of Wyoming. Laramie, Wyoming.

Wetland Status

Interpreting Wetland Status

Top Level Regions
Hawaii UPL
North America
Arid West FACU
Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plain FACU
Eastern Mountains and Piedmont FACU
Great Plains FACU
Midwest FACU
Northcentral & Northeast FACU
Western Mountains, Valleys, and Coast FACU

Related Links

More Accounts and Images
ARS Germplasm Resources Information Network (SATR12)
CalPhotos (SATR12)
Flora of North America (SATR12)
Integrated Taxonomic Information System (SAAU3)
Integrated Taxonomic Information System (SAIB)
Integrated Taxonomic Information System (SAKAR)
Integrated Taxonomic Information System (SAKAT3)
Integrated Taxonomic Information System (SAPE10)
Integrated Taxonomic Information System (SARU10)
Integrated Taxonomic Information System (SATR12)
Jepson Interchange (University of California - Berkeley) (SATR12)
Native American Ethnobotany (University of Michigan - Dearborn) (SATR12)
University of Tennessee Herbarium (Distribution) (SATR12)
University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point Freckmann Herbarium (SATR12)
Related Websites
Arizona: abstract & image of Russian thistle (Salsola kali) (SAKAT6)
Manitoba Agriculture - Weeds in Crop Production: abstract & images (SAKAT6)

Wildlife

Food

Source Large Mammals Small Mammals Water Birds Terrestrial Birds

Cover

Source Large Mammals Small Mammals Water Birds Terrestrial Birds

Description of Values

Value Class Food Cover


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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 4 | Chenopodiaceae | Salsola

2. Salsola tragus Linnaeus, Cent. Pl. II. 13. 1756.

Russian thistle, soude roulante, tumbleweed

Salsola australis R. Brown; S. iberica (Sennen & Pau) Botschantzev ex Czerepanov; S. kali var. tenuifolia Tausch; S. pestifer A. Nelson

Herbs, (5-)10-100 cm, sparsely papillose to hispid or glabrous. Stems erect, rarely ascending, profusely branched from or near base (rarely simple in underdeveloped specimens); branches arcuate, proximal ones occasionally ± prostrate. Leaves alternate; blade filiform or narrowly linear, less than 1 mm wide in herbarium specimens, not fleshy, not swollen at base, apex subspinescent (spine less than 1.5 mm). Inflorescences interrupted at maturity (at least proximally), 1-flowered (rarely 2-3-flowered with lateral flowers mostly abortive); bracts alternate at maturity, not imbricate, reflexed, not distinctly swollen at base, ± abruptly narrowing into mucronulate-spinose apex. Flowers: bracteoles distinct or occasionally connate at base in proximal flowers; perianth segments with prominent, membranous wing at maturity (two inner wings usually much smaller than the other three), apex weak, obtuse to weakly acuminate or reflexed, glabrous; fruiting perianth ca. 4-10 mm diam. 2 n = 36.

Flowering summer-fall. Disturbed areas, roadsides, cultivated fields, coastal and riparian sands, semideserts, deserts, eroded slopes; 0-2500 m; introduced; Alta., B.C., Man., N.B., Nfld. & Labr., N.S., Ont., P.E.I., Que., Sask.; Ala., Ariz., Ark., Calif., Colo., Conn., Del., D.C., Ga., Idaho, Ill., Ind., Iowa, Kans., Ky., La., Maine, Md., Mass., Mich., Minn., Miss., Mo., Mont., Nebr., Nev., N.H., N.J., N.Mex., N.Y., N.C., N.Dak., Ohio, Okla., Oreg., Pa., R.I., S.C., S.Dak., Tenn., Tex., Utah, Vt., Va., Wash., W.Va., Wis., Wyo.; Mexico; Eurasia; naturalized Central America, South America, s Africa, Australia.

Salsola tragus probably was introduced to South Dakota in 1870 or 1874 in flaxseed imported from Russia (J. C. Beatley 1973c; C. W. Crompton and I. J. Bassett 1985; S. L. Mosyakin 1996). Now this noxious weed occupies almost all of its potential range in North America. It seems, however, to be quite rare in the southeastern part of the United States.

Salsola tragus has been known in North American and European botanical literature under numerous names (for detailed synonymy see S. L. Mosyakin 1996 and S. Rilke 1999). Judging from the photographs of the Linnaean specimen of S. tragus (LINN 315.3), which should be regarded as a lectotype, it is the correct name for the widespread, narrow-leaved, weedy representative of the S. kali aggregate (Á. Degen 1936-1938, vol. 2; N. N. Tzvelev 1993; S. L. Mosyakin 1996; S. Rilke 1999).

In the present circumscription, Salsola tragus is an extremely polymorphic species consisting of several more or less distinct races (subspecies or segregate species). Several varieties may be recognized within S. tragus , many of them are just morphological variants of little or no taxonomic value.

Studies using allozymes and DNA-based molecular markers in some North American and Eurasian representatives of Salsola tragus indicate that there are at least two cryptic genetically divergent populations (F. J. Ryan and D. R. Ayres 2000). More studies may clarify distribution, origin, and taxonomic status of these infraspecific taxa (or cryptic species).

In spite of being a noxious weed, Salsola tragus is an additional forage source for livestock in arid rangelands. The mature plant may break off at the stem base to form a tumbleweed.

SELECTED REFERENCE

Crompton, C. W. and I. J. Bassett. 1985. The biology of Canadian weeds. 65. Salsola pestifer A. Nels. Canad. J. Pl. Sci. 65: 379-388.

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http://calphotos.berkeley.edu/cgi/img_query?query_src=dl&where-taxon=Salsola+tragus&where-lifeform=specimen_tag&rel-lifeform=ne&rel-taxon=begins+with&where-lifeform=Plant ---> https://calphotos.berkeley.edu/cgi/img_query?query_src=dl&where-taxon=Salsola+tragus&where-lifeform=specimen_tag&rel-lifeform=ne&rel-taxon=begins+with&where-lifeform=Plant

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Number of matches : 108
Query: SELECT * FROM img WHERE ready=1 and taxon like "Salsola tragus%" and (lifeform != "specimen_tag" OR lifeform != "Plant") ORDER BY taxon

Click on the thumbnail to see an enlargement

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russianthistle
ID: 0000 0000 1001 0103 [detail]
© 2001 Jeff Abbas

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russianthistle
ID: 0000 0000 1001 0100 [detail]
© 2001 Jeff Abbas

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russianthistle
ID: 0000 0000 1001 0102 [detail]
© 2001 Jeff Abbas

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russianthistle
ID: 6259 3022 3484 0039 [detail]
© 1995 Saint Mary's College of California

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russianthistle
ID: 0000 0000 1001 0101 [detail]
© 2001 Jeff Abbas

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russianthistle
ID: 8076 3101 4742 0123 [detail]
Charles Webber
© 1998 California Academy of Sciences

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Prickly Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 1104 0252 [detail]
© 2004 James M. Andre

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0406 1609 [detail]
© 2006 Heath McAllister

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0406 1611 [detail]
© 2006 Heath McAllister

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0807 0942 [detail]
© 2007 Thomas Stoughton

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0807 0943 [detail]
© 2007 Thomas Stoughton

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Prickly Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0807 1591 [detail]
© 2007 Thomas Stoughton

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Prickly Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0807 1592 [detail]
© 2007 Thomas Stoughton

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Tumbleweed
ID: 0000 0000 0616 2506 [detail]
© 2016 Michael O'Brien

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Tumbleweed
ID: 0000 0000 0616 2507 [detail]
© 2016 Michael O'Brien

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Tumbleweed
ID: 0000 0000 0616 1451 [detail]
© 2016 Michael O'Brien

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0809 1428 [detail]
© 2009 Ron Wolf

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Prickly Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0908 1054 [detail]
© 2008 Thomas Stoughton

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Prickly Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0908 1055 [detail]
© 2008 Thomas Stoughton

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Prickly Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0908 1056 [detail]
© 2008 Thomas Stoughton

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
ID: 0000 0000 1108 1031 [detail]
© 2008 Steve Matson

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
ID: 0000 0000 1108 1032 [detail]
© 2008 Steve Matson

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
ID: 0000 0000 1108 1033 [detail]
© 2008 Steve Matson

Salsola tragus
Salsola tragus
Russian Thistle
ID: 0000 0000 0909 0363 [detail]
© 2009 Neal Kramer

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