Growing Artichokes In Zone 5

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Last Updated on January 15, 2022

Growing artichokes in zone 5 is truly a beautiful experience as it can withstand mild winters, or you can overwinter for the next season.

A mature artichoke plant reaches up to 5 feet tall and ­equally as wide. This stunning, half-hardy perennial vegetable has masses of 3-foot-long, silvery, deeply serrated leaves, and towering flower stalks. These flower stalks are topped with edible flower buds known as artichokes.

A happy, healthy artichoke plant produces dozens of chokes during its lifetime, mainly if grown in the right conditions.

Nearly 100% of all the United States’ commercial artichoke crop grows in California, where the weather is ideal for proper growth. Artichokes require a long growing season with warm days and cool nights; however, these conditions shouldn’t stop you from growing this expensive vegetable in your part of the country.

Growing Artichokes Hardiness Zone 5

Zone 5 likely receives mild winters meaning you can grow your artichokes as perennial. However, should winters become too cold, you can overwinter your artichokes to plant them in the coming season. In areas where they withstand the winter, they can last up to 5 years.

Plant artichokes at least 4 feet apart in an area with full sun to partial shade and nutrient-rich, loamy soil. Add compost manure or other rich organic matter to improve the nutrition and texture of the native soil.

Water your artichokes right after planting and provide consistent soil moisture throughout its growing season by watering when you notice your top inch of soil is dry.

Growing Artichokes Hardiness Zone 5 - Watering

Keep weeds from growing and retain the soil moisture by adding a 4-inch layer of mulch from organic material like straw, dry grass clippings, or aged manure to prevent weeds. When the buds begin to form, remove the mulch and add a 4-inch layer of compost.

Harvest artichoke buds when they are about 3 inches in diameter. At this time, they should be tightly packed and firm. For fantastic results, during harvest time, mix a continuous-release plant food into the soil during planting and reapply according to the instructions on the label.

If growing artichokes in containers, choose a pot that is 24 inches in diameter and fill it with an organic planting mix that provides potted plants’ roots with the ideal growing environment. Plant your artichoke seedlings on top of the amended soil, spacing plants at least 4 feet apart.

In zones 6 and other colder zones, you can plant artichokes more closely, at least 2 to 3 feet apart, because frost will prevent the plant from reaching its fully mature, established size.

What Zones Will Artichokes Grow In?

Artichokes are generally cultivated commercially in beautiful sunny California. With proper artichoke winter care, this perennial is hardy to USDA zone 6 and occasionally zone 5 if receiving mild winters.

Artichokes can grow and produce for up to 7 years in the above areas, making it beneficial to protect artichokes during winter.

Seed Needs, Green Globe Artichoke (Cynaria scolymus) Twin Pack of 30 Seeds Each Non-GMO

 What Time Of Year Do You Plant Artichokes In Zone 5 And More?

Artichoke thrives best where mild winters and cool, foggy summers prevail. In such weather conditions, they grow as perennials, yielding harvests for up to 5 years.

In zones 8 and 9, where winters are only a few frosty nights, the artichoke plants will sometimes overwinter when mulched and pruned.

You will need to treat artichokes as annuals planting them in spring in colder regions.

In zones 10 and 11, artichokes are best planted in fall in the humid, subtropical, frost-free areas.

How Cold Hardy Are Artichokes?

Artichokes are native to the Mediterranean! This makes one think they cannot tolerate the chill of winter very well. Surprisingly, provided with proper care, overwintering artichoke plants is possible.

The edible part of the plant is the flower head, and when allowed to bloom, this neon purple is quite stunning in its own right. Artichokes do not set flower buds until the second year of growth. Therefore, protecting artichokes in winter is highly essential.

How To Care For Artichokes In The Winter?

Once you have grown the artichokes for a season and winter is approaching, it’s time to provide artichoke with the proper winter care. Choose a variety that has a shorter growing season, like the Green Globe or Imperial Star. These varieties are hardier than other varieties.

There are three methods for overwintering artichoke plants.


If you are growing your plant in the ground, insulate the roots with a deep layer of mulch. Surround the entire plant with chicken wire that is about 12 inches and rises above the plant. Use landscape pins to secure the cage to the ground. Fill this cage with a mix of shredded leaves and straw. Leave this mulched cage in place throughout the winter season. When spring arrives and the danger of frost has passed in your region, slowly remove a little of the mulch, gradually exposing the plant for 2 to 3 weeks.

Container Growing

Another method for overwintering artichokes is to grow them in containers. Grow your artichokes in containers throughout the growing season, or dig up plants grown in the garden when temperatures get cool and pot them. Potted artichokes need rich potting soil mixed with compost. Instead of heavily mulching the plants, you can move them into a sheltered area like a garage or cool cellar with a temperature between 35-50°F. (2-10°C.).

You don’t need glow lights for the plants. Before overwintering artichoke in containers, cut the plants down to the crown when frost is pending. Next, move them to the area of your choice and water them every 4-6 weeks until spring.

Artichokes - Container Growing

Dig up The Artichokes And Store

The final method of artichoke winter care is the easiest. Cut the plants all the way down to the ground before frost arrives. Dig the crowns and root system, gently shaking as much soil as possible from the roots. Store the bare-root clumps in a box of peat moss in a refrigerator or cold garage. Don’t let this box get wet or be exposed to freezing temperatures. Keep an eye on the bare roots and destroy any that become mushy or soft. Once spring arrives and all danger of frost passes, replant the bare roots.


Can you grow artichokes in Zone 5? With proper winter care, this plant can grow in zone 5 and overwinter in any above ways.

Overwintering artichoke isn’t difficult; it takes a little knowledge and planning. These plants can grow and produce for up to 7 years, making them highly beneficial to the gardener.

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