Eguzkilore (Carlina acanthifolia)

In each community there is usually a plant that has some very special meaning for the people. It is often a flower loaded with symbolism, the protagonist of legends told long ago. Such is the case of the eguzkilore, which is also known as the Sun flower or protective flower.

It grows wild in the mountains of Southern Europe, and especially in those of Cantabria and the Basque Country, where it is held in high esteem.

Characteristics of the eguzkilore

Image – Wikimedia/ Meneerke bloem

It is a lively herb, that is, it lives for several years and reaches a height of approximately 30 centimeters. Its scientific name is Carlina acanthifolia. During the first months it develops a rigid stem, from which green and lobed leaves with thorns sprout, very similar to those of the thistle.

After about two years, in summer, the flowers appear, which are yellow. Pale yellow/ cream petal-like bracts (modified leaves) sprout around it, which are also spiny.

How to sow eguzkilore?

If you would like to have this flower in your garden or on the patio, we recommend that you take into account what we are going to tell you below:

Get seeds from specialized sites

The eguzkilore is a species that is protected, so only seeds that come from authorized crops have to be sown, since otherwise not only would you be committing a crime but it could also endanger the survival of the species already threatened by climate change.

Sow them as soon as possible

The seeds remain viable for a short time, so the sooner they are sown the better. Do the following:

  1. Fill a pot that is at least 12 centimeters in diameter with universal substrate. If not, mix with 30% perlite, pumice, or similar substrates.
  2. Next, moisten the substrate. Pour water until you see it coming out of the holes in its base.
  3. Then, take 2-3 seeds, and put them on the surface of the substrate separated from each other.
  4. Then cover them with a little substrate so that they are not too exposed.
  5. Finally, place the pot outside, and go watering it every time you see that the soil is drying out.

If viable, they will germinate in late winter or early spring.

Caring for the eguzkilore

Image – Wikimedia/ Franck Hidvégi

How is this plant to be cared for? If you are curious, keep reading:


It must be grown outdoors, in full sun. It needs to be exposed to solar radiation so that it can grow and develop normally. If it were kept in the shade or indoors, its stem would grow in the direction of the light, and not vertically.

Soil or substrate

  • Pot: must be filled with mulch or universal substrate (on sale here ).
  • Garden: the land must be fertile and light.

Irrigation and subscriber

The eguzkilore will be watered an average of 3-4 times a week during the summer, and about 2 weekly the rest of the year. It is highly recommended to take advantage of and pay it from time to time, every 15 days or once a month during the warm months.


You will only need one or two transplants in your lifetime. Do this when you see the roots come out of the drainage holes.

Legend of the eguzkilore

It is a legend that has been transmitted orally from generation to generation for a long time. He tells that in the past, when the first human beings began to populate the Earth, neither the Sun nor the Moon existed. The only thing that was there was darkness, one that frightened them because from the center of the Earth arose fire bulls and even dragons.

So one day they decided to ask the Earth for protection, but she replied that she was very busy. The people insisted, and the Earth created the Moon for them, but it was not enough: after overcoming the initial fear, the witches, dragons, and flying horses came out again.

Then, the town again asked the Earth for help, and it created the Sun: much brighter than the Moon, which would serve to indicate the day.

Luckily, the demons that harassed people couldn’t get used to the intense light it radiated, so they only came out at night. Now, the town wanted to be quiet, so they got back in touch with Earth.

She helped them, creating a flower that the beings of darkness would not want to see: the eguzkilore, or flower of the Sun.

It is a very beautiful legend, and like any legend worth its salt, it has its part of reality.

Uses and properties of eguzkilore

Image – Wikimedia/ Ghislain118

It has several uses:

  • Cut and/ or dried flower: in some villages it was hung on the doors of the houses to attract good luck, as well as to protect the family that lived inside.
  • Edible: its leaves are edible. They can be consumed as vegetables, in salads for example.
  • Medicinal: the essential oil that is extracted from the root is used to care for the skin, as well as to treat it in case of acne or eczema.

What did you think of this plant?

Related posts

Deja una respuesta

Tu dirección de correo electrónico no será publicada. Los campos obligatorios están marcados con *

Botón volver arriba