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How to Grow Artichoke

Artichoke Germination Information

Artichoke Seed Germination How to Sow Artichoke:
  • Best sown indoors at a temperature to 60-70° and at a depth of 4 times the size of the seeds
  • Sow indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost
  • Expect germination in 12-15 days
  • Seeds can also be sown outdoors after all danger of frost is past in the spring, but when the soil is still cool
  • It is 5-7 months from sowing to crop production (if started early, they will produce fruit the first year)
  • When sowing seed outdoors, we recommend a maximum planting depth of 4X the width of the seed

How to Grow Artichoke:
Transplanting: Transplant when there are at least two sets of true leaves

Spacing: Space seedlings 4 feet apart

Lighting: Site in full sun

Soil: Site in a rich, well-drained soil

Additional Care: Provide straw mulch underneath during the growing season (to help keep the roots cool and moist) and mulch the entire plant heavily during the winter in Zones 6-7. Water heavily and fertilize before planting and again when plants are 2 feet tall. This plant prefers climates with long, cool summers

Appearance and Use:

This sister of Cardoon (Cynara cardunculus) is also a large spreading, architectural plant growing 4-5 feet tall by 3-4 feet wide. It produces large, silver-green, ferny leaves, however, it is not grown for ornamental attributes. Rather, it is grown for its edible, thick-scaled flower buds. Harvest the buds when they are about 4 inches in diameter, plump, and the scales are still tight. Cut the stems 1-2 inches below the base of the buds, next cut the entire stalk to the ground to promote a second crop. If the buds go unharvested they will open as 6-8 inch, purplish, thistle-like flowers

About Artichoke:
Botanical name: Cynara scolymus
Pronunciation:  sin’å-rå sko-le’mus
Lifecycle:  Annual
Origination: Asteraceae; native to the Mediterranean