Frosty Ball Thistle (Cirsium scopularum) is not the most attractive wildflower you will every come across, but it sure is common. It can grow up to 2 feet tall, but I have usually seen specimens around a one foot tall.
This plant prefers light sandy soil. I often see it along road sides where the soil has been disturbed.
Drink at altitude (never recommended) and you might just think this plant arrived from someplace farther away than Kansas!