Usually a biennial in Zone 8, the growth crowns overwinter in warmer zones. By the following summer, produces towering flower spikes to 6 feet topped with large bristle cones that are filled with small mauve blossoms for weeks. Adored by bees!
An ancient plant, the dried cones were used in textile processing as a natural comb for cleaning wool. These flower heads were attached to spindles to raise the nap on fabrics. Used to this day by artisans who prefer the quality over modern metal combs. The heads are also prized by florists.
Teasel thrives in marginal areas even in poor soil and dry conditions. Their tap roots are used very successfully to break up very compacted clay soils. Best to direct sow in early spring covering seed lightly. We allow it to naturalize and can self sow.