Caltrop (Tribulus terrestris)

Today we are going to talk about a plant that is widely used in the world of sports since it is classified as a natural anabolic. It’s all about thistles. Its scientific name is Tribulus terrestris and it has a meaning something like a terrestrial spiny weapon. It refers to their appearance and growth. It is a plant widely used by athletes who do not want to catabolize and lose muscle mass.

In this article we are going to tell you about the characteristics and care of thistles in addition to all the properties they have and that are very beneficial for humans. Do you want to know more about it?

Main features

It is a perennial herbaceous plant that grows annually in the summer and is usually found in colder climates. Its stems are not very long and end in a crown that is 1 meter high. The crown is only one centimeter in diameter. It is quite a branchy plant and forms flat bushes. In general, they tend to grow somewhat larger if it is among other taller plants or in shade.

The leaves are pinnate and compound with leaflets less than 7 mm long. It has small flowers that are only 10 mm wide and contain 5 yellow petals. When the flowers sprout, you can see how, as the days go by, the fruit can be seen and drops a few nuts that are shaped like a walnut. The seed has a hard bearing and consists of two more acute spines of about 10mm in length. They are capable of poking a small hole in a bicycle tire. It is better that you do not step on these seeds barefoot, because you will surely regret it for a time of pain.

Cultivation of thistles

Thistles are planted both in pots and directly into the ground. If you sow the seeds in a shallow way in the ground, they must be placed with a fine layer of fine sand. Normally they germinate in 40 days and this is when you have to make transplants in case of continuous frosts.

The substrate must be sandy and moist and have good drainage. Let’s not forget that if we water the plants and we are puddling the soil, we will be causing their drowning. We must maintain an adequate degree of humidity so that it can develop in good conditions. If the climate in the area where you plant it is generally humid, you won’t have to worry too much. The irrigation indicator is when the substrate begins to become dry. In order not to worry too much about the humidity that we are giving the thistles, it is better to place a plate with water under the pot to give it the water it needs at all times.

They are very palatable to livestock in the hottest time of summer. However, the spines of the fruits can damage the mouth of sheep and goats. In addition, they adhere to wool, hair and hooves, so their spread is quite fast. It reaches the point of becoming invasive in many areas.

Properties of the Tribulus terrestris

This type of plant is capable of promoting the metabolic environment of people. It establishes more favorable conditions that help accelerate the metabolic reactions that cause protein synthesis. Protein synthesis is very important when it comes to forming new tissues and promoting anabolism.

It is perfect for those active people who have a more demanding job and who train. These types of people have greater wear and tear and, therefore, greater nutritional needs. For this reason, the consumption of sports supplements whose essential content is thistle, can favor the reconstruction of tissues damaged during training and the formation of new ones.

The Tribulus terrestris is able to intervene in the processes by which the body is releasing growth hormones such as testosterone. Also, it can work as an adaptogen. That is, it helps us combat daily situations that put us to the test, such as stress from having too many obligations. By taking supplements with thistle, we will notice that anxiety, irritation and bad mood are more controlled.

It also has other hormonal benefits such as:

  • Optimization of testosterone levels to gain muscle mass. Thanks to this, an anabolic environment is created.
  • It serves as a natural aphrodisiac, stimulating libido in both men and women.
  • Helps generate higher rates of muscle mass r.
  • They prevent erectile dysfunction.
  • Increases fertility, increasing the production of sperm.
  • Increases the concentration of female hormones that control ovulation.
  • Decreases the problems that cause menopause.

Control of populations

As we have mentioned before, the way this plant reproduces becomes annoying and even becomes an invasive plant if the environment is favorable. In these cases, there are different methods of population control or eradication. These methods are applied after planting has been completed to prevent them from spreading on their own.

Biological solutions such as the use of herbicides and population control by natural predators do not provide a solution for total extinction, since the seeds of thistles can remain active but dormant for up to 7 years. In this type of situation, what you try to do is to control small areas in a natural way using an implement to extract the entire plant by the roots. Thus, although in a slower way, a more efficient job can be achieved.

This entails a subsequent work of monitoring the worked area, carrying out movements of the earth in the growth periods to ensure that the plant has not grown again. Although it has very good benefits for the body and is used for the creation of sports supplements, we are not interested in it becoming a completely invasive plant. Another way that exists to eradicate them is to drown them in competition with other plants that have a more favorable growth in these conditions.

I hope that with this information you can learn more about thistles and their ability to help the hormonal environment of the human being.

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