How to Grow Dipsacus Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Teasel

Dipsacus are hardy biannuals that grow from 90 to 180 cm (3 to 6 feet) in height.

They are thistle like in nature, with prickly leaves and similar flowers of white, pink or purple. These come into bloom in the summer.

Dipsacus fullonum
Dipsacus fullonum by Nuuuuuuuuuuul.

One of the most common names for Dipsacus is Teasel.

Teasel by Matt Lavin.

Commonly Grown Dipsacus Species

Dipsacus fullonum

Dipsacus fullonum
Dipsacus fullonum Syn. with Dipsacus Sylvestris (Wild teasel / Common teasel / Fuller's teasel), photograph by Andreas Rockstein; CC.

Dipsacus laciniatus

Dipsacus laciniatus
Dipsacus laciniatus (Cut-leaved Teasel), picture by Kevin Kenny; CC.

Dipsacus pilosus

Dipsacus pilosus
Dipsacus pilosus (Small teasel), Image by Donald Hobern; CC.

Dipsacus Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Teasel; Wild; Spiny; Small; Japanese Fuller’s. Teazel.
Life Cycle: Hardy biennial.
Height: 30 to 84 inches (75 to 210 cm).
Native: Europe, Asia, North Africa.

Growing Region: Zones 3 to 9.
Flowers: Summer.
Flower Details: White, purple, pink, lavender. Thistle-like.
Foliage: Herbaceous. Prickly. Lanceolate.

Sow Outside: Surface 1/4 inch (6 mm). Towards the end of spring and early summer. Germination time: less than a week to a month. Temperature: 60°F (16°C). Spacing 24 to 36 inches (60 to 90 cm). If you have been given a Teasel plant or bought one at the nursery then transplant in the autumn.
Sow Inside: No.

Requirements and care: Full sunlight for best results, will grow in the shade. Moist soil. These plants grow very aggressively and should only be grown if you have the time to look after them and weed them properly. Always deadhead flowers before they set seed to prevent spread. Weed unwanted seedlings ruthlessly. Propagate: self-seeds.

Miscellaneous: Be careful with this one as it spreads rapidly. Dipsacus is listed as noxious and invasive in some United States. Often grown at nature reserves in Europe to attract Goldfinches.

How to Grow Teasle (Dipsacus)

If you plan to grow Teasel then seeds should be planted outdoors at a depth of 7 mm at the beginning of the summer.

They can grow in both shady and sunny conditions, have a preference for moist soil and take about one to three weeks to germinate.

Caring for Dipsacus species such as Teasel

It is important to control Teasel (Dipsacus) once it has become established in the garden.

As soon as it has finished flowering cut the flowers off before the seeds have a chance to ripen, otherwise it will take over the garden.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Dipsacus plants. Updated September 2020.