Description from Flora of China
Cnicus henryi Franchet, J. Bot. (Morot) 11: 21. 1897; Cirsium forrestii (Diels) H. Léveillé; C. melanolepis Petrak; C. taliense (Jeffrey) H. Léveillé; Cnicus forrestii Diels; C. taliensis Jeffrey.
Herbs 30-50 cm tall, perennial. Stems erect, branched above, rarely unbranched, unwinged, with brown multicellular hairs. Leaves concolorous, surface green to pale green, smooth, and not cobwebby but with ± dense crispate multicellular hairs. Basal and lower cauline leaves petiolate; leaf blade lanceolate, oblanceolate, or ± narrowly elliptic, 10-18 × 4-8 cm, pinnately divided; segments 5-8 pairs, elliptic, lanceolate, or triangular, with unequal triangular teeth laterally spiny and with an apical (2-)6-7 mm spine; terminal segment largest. Middle and upper cauline leaves similar but sessile and gradually smaller upward. Bracts entire, ± broadly linear, margin spiny. Capitula corymbose or paniculate, ± nodding. Involucre campanulate, ca. 2 cm in diam., glabrous. Phyllaries in ca. 6 rows, lacking wings and scarious appendage, all of similar length; outer and middle phyllaries narrowly triangular, 11-14 × 1.5-2 mm, pectinately fringed with geminate 2.5-3 mm spinules, apex narrowed into a spinule; inner phyllaries triangular to lanceolate, 13-14 × ca. 2 mm, not spinulose. Florets bisexual. Corolla purple, ca. 1.6 cm, tube ca. 1 cm. Achene brownish, ca. 4 mm. Pappus bristles brownish, to 1.5 cm. Fl. and fr. Jun-Oct.
● Meadows; 2700-3500 m. W Hubei, Sichuan, Yunnan.