Russian-thistle definitions

Any of various prickly plants of the genus Salsola, especially S. tragus, a tumbleweed that is native to Eurasia and widespread in western North America.
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A spiny weed (Salsola kali) of the goosefoot family: it matures into a spherical tumbleweed.
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A prickly shrublike annual, Kali tragus (often erroneously referred to as Salsola kali, a synonym for Kali turgida), which is the best-known kind of tumbleweed.
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Origin of russian-thistle

From Russian + thistle: it's believed to have been introduced to North America from Russia, and it's prickly like a thistle.