What’s up with artichokes?

January 2012 I started these plants from seeds on a whim. I thought it would be cool to grow something really different for me. Last year, their first year, I just watched them and did not harvest any. That made me realize I needed to know how to tell when they are ripe and what to do when they are ready for harvest. Many cooking recipes suggest you cook the artichoke whole, however I prefer a method I found in Sunset magazine where you cut it in quarters and scoop out the fuzzy choke before cooking. That speeded up cooking and made eating easier.



This last photo was taken in 2011 when I just let the plant flower.