Acanthus mollis, commonly known as Bear's Breeches, is a herbaceous perennial plant in the genus Acanthus, native to southern Europe (Portugal east to Croatia) and northwest Africa, and is one of the earliest cultivated species of garden plants. It grows to 2 m tall, with basal clusters of deeply lobed and cut, shining dark green leaves up to 1 m long and 20 cm broad. The flowers are tubular, whitish, lilac or rose with spiny green or purplish bracts, and produced on stout spikes which grow up to 2.5 m (8 ft) above the leaves. It flowers in late spring or early summer. It grows in dry areas, and is tolerant of drought and shade. The plants are propagated from tubers and tend to form large, localized clumps which can survive for several decades. The leaves of this plant are generally considered by historians to have been the design inspiration for the Corinthian column capitals of Roman architecture.
Acanthus L., 1753 è un genere di piante della famiglia delle Acanthaceae, originario delle regioni mediterranee.Il nome deriva dal greco ἄκανθα che significa spina, per via delle estremità appuntite delle foglie e delle capsule che racchiudono i semi, in particolare nell'Acanthus spinosus.