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Common teasel, wild teasel, Dipsacus fullonum is an erect biennial with small prickles on the stem and distinctive spiny flower heads. Common teasel may reach 6 1/2 feet in height and is primarily a weed of roadsides, pastures & hayfields. Formerly used in textile processing, providing a natural comb for cleaning, aligning and raising the nap on fabrics, particularly wool. The dried flower heads were attached to spindles, wheels, or cylinders called teasel frames, to raise the nap on fabrics (that is, to tease the fibers). By the 20th century, teasels were largely replaced by metal cards, which could be made uniform and do not require constant replacement as the teasel heads wear. However, some people who weave wool still prefer to use teasels for raising the nap, claiming that the result is better; in particular, if a teasel meets serious resistance in the fabric, it will break, whereas a metal tool would rip the cloth.
Teasels are also occasionally grown as ornamental plants, and the dried heads are used in floristry.