How long does it really take to grow artichoke? A good understanding of the answer to this question gives you insight into the steps to take when growing artichokes. Also, the key consideration to note when growing this plant is also brought to the fore.
Adorned with long leaves with very elegant attractive blooms, artichokes are a great addition to your vegetable garden. The process of growing artichokes is not difficult. With proper planting and timing, watering and pruning, your artichokes harvest is bound to be bountiful.
This is a complete guide on how long it takes to grow artichokes and the key considerations to have when growing this plant. Although thistles are not always a great addition to a garden, the reason why artichokes are will be is explained here.
Before we delve into how long does it really take to grow artichoke, we will consider what the artichoke plant is. Now let us get into it.
About Artichoke Plant
Before you can get into artichokes growing and the process involved in growing artichokes, you must have a base knowledge of artichokes. Artichoke is a variety of thistles that are usually accepted in the garden.
Artichokes are mostly edible, but the portion of the plant usually eaten is the immature flower bud. This is found at the center of the plant, formed before the artichokes blooms. The artichoke plant although not an indigenous American plant, can grow in virtually every state in the United States. It usually grows in the range Zones 3-11.
Growing Duration For Artichokes: How Long Does It Take To Grow Artichoke
Artichokes can generally begin to produce from about 90 days after transplant. The exact time frame is however dependent on the variety. The artichokes are however required to be started about 8 to 12 weeks before they are transplanted.
The overall artichokes growing time considering the pre-transplant and after-transplant is therefore about 180 days.
Growing Artichoke From Seed: How Long Does It Take To Grow Artichoke
While artichokes may be grown and transplanted, they may also be grown from seed. Starting artichokes from seed is however more difficult and requires more attention. If you are however residing in an area where the artichokes can’t overwinter, you can grow them all year.
The seeds usually stay indoors between 8 to 12 weeks. If you do not aid artichokes, they may not blossom until the second year.
Artichoke seed may be planted anytime between January and mid-March. If you are however interested in planting in warmer climates, the timing may differ. The seedlings must be ready for planting immediately after the last frost date. This is usually before spring temperatures rise too high.
Transplant should be done when the plants are about 8 to 10 inches tall. At this point in time, the risk of frost must have passed. At this stage, the soil temperature has reached 60 Fahrenheit or higher.
How To Grow Artichokes: Germination Of Artichokes
Artichokes growing are usually very slow starters after they are planted. Plant the seeds two to three seeds in each 3 to 4-inch pot.
The time it takes for artichoke to sprout is dependent on a few factors. These include the quality of light the plant receives, the nature of the soil, and the general temperature. At the starting stage, the temperature should be around 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
At this temperature, it will take about two to three weeks for the seeds to germinate. After germination, water the young plant with a fertilizer solution weekly.
Artichokes usually require a lot of available resources to grow and soil nutrients. So, after about a month after germination, remove the small seedlings leaving only one in a pot. This will allow for the one left to grow optimally, utilizing the available nutrients.
When your indoor-grown seedlings have grown to about eight to ten inches, they are ready to be transplanted. Hardened them off and plant them outdoors. Plant them about 1.5 and 2 feet apart.
Harvesting And Storage Of Artichokes
Artichokes are usually ready to be harvested when you notice that the edible flower buds are tightly closed and slightly squeak when squeezed. Allowing the plant to open before harvesting will make them too hard to open and difficult to eat.
It usually will take you no less than 110 to 150 days for the plant to reach maturity when planted from seed. transplanting takes no less than 100 days. Most artichokes however will not flower until about the second year after planting.
Cut the plant back to about 1-2 inches from the ground. This is once the plant has matured and is ready for harvest. This allows for new sprouting to take place for the second year. New plants will begin to form at the base of the plant.
If you desire to get the best possible flavor, ensure you pick in the early hours of the morning, rinse thoroughly and eat fresh.
For proper storage, artichokes can be stored in the produce drawer of your refrigerator for up to about two weeks after harvesting.
Varieties Of Artichoke
Artichokes usually come in different varieties. Some of these are:
Green Globe: grown commercial variety. For this variety to adapt well, the growing condition must be ideal.
Big Heart: this is a thornless variety that has the ability to withstand some heat. It can survive some harsh weather conditions.
Imperial Star: this variety is adaptable to a wide variety of conditions. They can easily survive when grown from seeds. Grown annually.
Purple of Romagna: favored by chefs is this variety which is an Italian heirloom.
Violetto: this variety is notorious for its production of dozens of small side shoots.
Conclusion: How Long Does It Take To Grow Artichoke
This guide gives direction on the key things you must note if you are interested in growing Artichokes.
Plant good variety as this will affect the outcome of the plant. As such, this article also includes a brief review of some varieties. You have no worries about how to grow artichokes if you understand the answer to this question: How long does it take to grow artichokes.