In popular opinion only Scotchmen and donkeys are fond of Thistles, but if so we must say they show very good taste.

Among our hardy plants there are few finer subjects in point of foliage or flower than some of our common Thistles There are few more beautiful plants than the Musk Thistle, Carduus nutans; while the large Spear Thistle, C. lanceolatus, and C. eriophorus are really noble plants. C. Mari-anus, too, with its spotted leaves stained with drops from the Virgin's milk, according to the Catholic legend, is a grand plant for the back rows of the herbaceous border. The Cotton Thistle, Onopor-don Acanthium, is another stately plant, with its foliage densely covered with white cottony hairs. In the present issue we give a figure (fig. 61) of another Thistle, Cnicus altissimus, a common plant in the United States, for specimens of which we are indebted to Mr. Wilson Saunders, who tells us that he received the seeds from Kew, where it forms in its season one of the ornaments of the herbaceous ground, the seedlings being placed in the open ground, where, in the course of the summer, the plants attained a height of 11 feet, while at 4 feet from the ground the plant was 7 feet through. The form of the plant is very symmetrically conical. The flowers opened from above downwards. The lower leaves measured some 2 feet in length and a foot or more in breadth.

Reverting to the Scotch Thistle, we may recall to our readers the interesting communications of the ex-Curator of the Royal Gardens, Kew, and of Mr. Edwin Lees, in our volume for 1873, pp. 365 and 436, from which it appears that no authentic information relating to the use of the Thistle as a badge or emblem is known prior to 1488 - the story of the Danes attempting to invade a Scottish camp in the night, and pricking their feet with the Thistles to such an extent that they were forced to cry out and so reveal their presence, having no foundation. The historical evidence is that the Thistle was first used as the badge of Scot-and by King James IV. In 1514 James V placed the representation of the Thistle on his coins. James VI added the proud motto - " Nemo me impune lacessit." In Scotland Onopordon acanthium is generally accepted as the plant (see illustration in Gardeners' Chronicle, 1876, vol. v.,140). 140), but it is curious to find from Mr. Lees, who quotes Dr. Johnson, that " initiated gardeners" understood the Milk Thistle, Carduus Marianus, to be the true plant, and that they therefore (why therefore?) usually stuck the heads of the latter on the strong spines of the Onopordon or Cotton Thistle. It is doubtful whether either the one or the other of the plants named is a genuine native of Scotland. - Gardeners' Chronicle, April 5,1879.