How to Grow Artichokes {Start to Finish}

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artichoke seed packet botanical interests


I started my artichoke seeds this morning under grow lights and I am super excited. The Handsome Husband LOVES artichokes, and I think it’s one of the most beautiful vegetables in my opinion.

Brief description: The Artichoke is a thistle-like plant, grown for it’s nutritious edible flower {which must be eaten before it blooms}.

Where to Plant the Artichoke:  In colder climates, start indoors 12 weeks before last predicted frost date.  In milder climates, sow indoors in early fall and transplant outside 6 weeks before first frost.   Once transplanted outside, choose a somewhat sheltered location where they can get full sun most of the day.

artichoke seeds picture botanical interets

Planting Seeds:  Plant seeds 1/8″ deep, with 3-4 seeds every 4-6″.  Keep rows at least 2-4′ apart.  These guys really like their space.

Growing Tips:  Fertilize once a week with a liquid fertilizer and make sure they have proper drainage.


How to Harvest:  Harvest when buds reach full size, but are still closed {otherwise they will be like chewing on dried out leather}.  Cut off the buds within 2-3 inches of the stem.

Artichokes Stewed in Olive OilArtichokes Stewed in Olive Oil Recipe

Remember when I stumbled into the French Laundry Gardens last June?

The French Laundry Garden Tour Napa Valley, California

artichoke plant

Ever since then, I’ve wanted to recreate parts of that garden.  Growing these artichokes ought to do it.  I mean, how hard could it be?  I’ll hammer it out by the fall and move onto world peace.  Peace. Of. Cake.

Looking for artichoke seeds? Head on over HERE.

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  1. I have artichokes growing in my garden, though I started them from rhizomes rather than seeds. They come back year after year and I have at least two harvests per year.

    • I had them in my garden 2 years ago until the chickens ate them. :) I didn’t notice if there were 2 harvests. I’ll have to be on the look out now. Thanks!

  2. This may be a silly question, but how do you make sure that have proper drainage?

    • When I am starting them from seed? Or do you mean outside? I’ve never had drainage issues so I’m not sure what you mean. :(

  3. After traveling through the artichoke capital of the world I decided to grow these last year
    I had 5 beautiful plants growing and a stinkin’ gopher ate them one by one. I am reattempting this year so here’s a good luck wish for both of us. Bring on the melted butter!

  4. sharon massena says:

    You planted them now? Our last frost date is April. You may have to greenhouse them for awhile

    • I’m starting them under grow lights in the house, then will move them outside in 12 weeks as per the package. :) I can’t wait, I think they’ll look neat planted in the garden.

      • I did that last year but they needed to be in a moist towel and refrig for a week or more first. Did your’s need this?

  5. Dana Collins says:

    We have three plants in our yard. I bought them from The Plant Farm in Smokey Point. We ate at least seven from our plants this past August and September. We ended up with two green globe and one of the purple of ramagna. The purple ones are wonderful. They were one of my favorite plants in the yard this year! I did nothing but water them. During the winter you have to put straw on top of them to keep them, because there are suppose to produce for five to seven years. Good Luck!

  6. Yay, I was so excited to read you are growing artichokes! In August, I went to Hatley Park (in Victoria, B.C.) and toured their gardens. What a beautiful place! I just had to take pictures of their artichokes in bloom and now I will attempt them in my garden! Thanks, Mavis! I look forward to following your journey.

  7. This is several things that I have heard of that you are growing under grow lights, I saw that you recommend one on amazon, but my biggest worry is the extra electricity as when my mother was younger and grew with them it raised her bill considerably, I was wondering if you saw a huge difference in your bill using them.

  8. I guess I better start planting some seeds. Guess I will take the little one and get some stuff. What size of pots do you use to start the seeds in? I had some of those tray greenhouses that worked amazing a couple years ago that I will most like get.

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