Globe Artichoke Plants for Sale – How to Choose and Grow this Unique Edible

With their distinctive architectural form and scrumptious edible flower buds, globe artichoke plants make a great addition to an edible or ornamental garden. If you’ve been considering purchasing some artichoke plants for your yard, here’s what you need to know about selecting top varieties and providing them with proper care for bountiful harvests.

A Bit About Globe Artichokes

Globe artichokes (Cynara cardunculus var. scolymus) are large vase-shaped thistles that can grow up to 5 feet tall and wide. The edible portion is the immature flower bud that forms at the end of thick stems arising from a clump of deeply lobed silvery foliage.

There are green and purple varieties of globe artichokes When allowed to bloom fully, the flowers are quite striking – up to 7 inches in diameter with delicate purple petals

While technically a perennial, artichokes are usually grown as annuals or biennials in all but the warmest climates, as they perform best in their first or second years from seed. Established plants will produce tasty buds for about 5 years before yields decline.

Where to Buy Globe Artichoke Plants

You can purchase Globe artichoke plants from several reputable online nurseries:

  • Mountain Valley Growers – Offers organic 3-inch potted plants and plug trays. Zone 7-11 hardy.

  • Burpee – Sells seeds and bare root plants. Imperial Star and Green Globe varieties.

  • Growers Exchange – Green Globe and purple Imperial Star varieties sold as young potted plants.

  • Stark Bros – Carries Imperial Star purple artichokes and Green Globe plants. Zone 7-11.

Many local nurseries and garden centers also stock artichoke starts in spring. Look for stocky young plants with no signs of disease, wilting or leaf damage.

Choosing the Best Varieties

Some top artichoke varieties for home gardens include:

  • Green Globe – Classic heirloom with excellent flavor. Large buds on heavy yielding plants.

  • Imperial Star – Striking purple color, spineless leaves. Earlier and higher yielding than Green Globe.

  • Violetto – Smaller purple artichoke with high yields and great taste. Thornless leaves make harvesting easy.

  • Big Heart – Large, meaty hearts great for stuffing. Productive plants with good cold hardiness for Zone 5/6.

For cooler climates, lean towards early-producing, cold hardy varieties like Big Heart, Green Globe and Violetto. In warm winter areas, Imperial Star and Green Globe will thrive.

Growing Conditions Artichokes Prefer

To get a hearty harvest from your artichoke patch, provide the following care:

  • Sun: Pick a spot with full sun – artichokes need a minimum of 6-8 hours of direct sunlight daily.

  • Soil: Plant in fertile, well-draining soil enriched with compost or manure. They thrive in a soil pH range of 6.5-7.5.

  • Water: New plants need 1-2 inches of water weekly. Established artichokes are quite drought tolerant but produce best with regular water, especially when fruiting.

  • Temperature: Most varieties do well in Zone 7 and warmer. Protect new plants if frost threatens.

  • Fertilizer: Use a balanced organic fertilizer at planting. Side dress with nitrogen mid-season to promote vigorous growth and larger chokes.

  • Pests & Disease: Watch for aphids and slugs. Good air circulation prevents powdery mildew.

Planting and Growing Globe Artichokes

Follow these tips for successfully growing globe artichoke plants:

  • Start seeds indoors 8-10 weeks before your last spring frost date. Harden off before transplanting outdoors.

  • Alternatively, set out nursery-grown plants when danger of frost has passed and soil has warmed.

  • Space plants 3-4 feet apart in rows spaced 5 feet apart.

  • Dig 1-2 inches of compost or manure into planting beds before setting out artichoke plants. Mix in a balanced organic fertilizer as well.

  • Keep soil moist but not waterlogged. Add a thick mulch layer to retain moisture and suppress weeds.

  • Stake taller varieties if needed. Provide good air circulation with proper spacing and pruning.

  • Remove weeds and work compost into the top few inches of soil monthly.

  • Cut back dead growth in late fall after several hard frosts. Mulch heavily over the winter.

Harvesting Globe Artichoke Flower Buds

  • Begin harvesting when buds measure 3-4 inches in diameter. Cut with a few inches of stem attached.

  • Harvest by slicing through the stem with a sharp knife at soil level or carefully snap off by hand.

  • Leave smaller buds to mature for later harvests. Don’t let them bloom fully or they’ll become bitter and inedible.

  • Stop harvesting if cold weather threatens, as chokes do not withstand frost.

  • Expect 8 – 12 chokes per plant; harvest for 2-3 weeks during peak season.

Enjoying Your Globe Artichoke Harvest

Some tasty ways to eat and cook fresh artichoke hearts:

  • Steam or boil and serve with lemon butter, aioli or vinaigrette for dipping.

  • Stuff with seasoned bread crumbs, cheese, meat or seafood mixtures.

  • Grill seasoned artichoke halves or quarters until tender.

  • Sauté thawed frozen artichoke hearts with olive oil and garlic. Toss with pasta or rice.

  • Blend cooked artichokes into dips, sauces, soups or casseroles.

With their statuesque form, edible yields and carefree growth, globe artichoke plants deserve more space in home vegetable patches and ornamental beds. Get your hands on a few starters this spring and enjoy growing this unique, old-world heirloom.

Annuals & Perennials Size Chart

globe artichoke plants for sale

Typically available from early spring through mid-summer. Check with your local store for current availability.

Olive green, globe-like flowers bloom with a neon purple color if left unharvested. Excellent, nutty flavor when steamed, boiled, baked or grilled.

Draw pollinators into your garden with pollinator-attracting plants.

* Check Stores for current availability, or stop in to see the full selection.

  • Size: 4 tall, 6-8 wide
  • Days to Maturity: Evergreen Perennial
  • Productivity: 4” Globes
  • Light Requirement: Full Sun
  • Water Needs: Low to Moderate
  • Growth Habit: Upright

5 gallon cans available from early spring to through summer. Check with your local store for current availability. In fall, self fruiting almond .

Typically available from fall to spring. Call your favorite store for current availability. In fall, self fruiting almond tree produces heavy crop.

A deciduous fruiting shrub or small tree has beautiful orange-red flowers in the summer, followed by tangy, red fruit with soft seeds in the early fall.

Fiber pots available from winter to early spring. Five gallon cans available from early spring to through summer. Check with your local store for c.

Fiber pots available from winter to early spring. Check with your local store for current availability. Partly self-fruitful tree produces dark re.

How to Grow Artichokes in ANY Climate


Do globe artichokes come back every year?

They are perennials, living for several years, with the top growth dying back in autumn, then re-sprouting in spring. Plants can be grown from seed or bought as young plants in spring, and clumps should be divided every four or five years, to produce new, more vigorous plants.

Do globe artichokes spread?

Grow globe artichokes in a warm, sunny, sheltered site in moist but well-drained soil. Give them plenty of space to grow – they reach a height of around 1.5m tall and a spread of around 60cm.

Do artichokes take 2 years to grow?

Because artichokes often take two years to flower, they are typically sold as container plants in their second year or as established root crowns. They become large plants and should be spaced at least four feet apart, but six feet is even better.

What is a green globe artichoke?

Green Globe Artichoke is a newly improved artichoke. The Green Globe flowers in early summer. The flower buds are deep green with a light purple tinge. A good harvest of 3-4 heads can be expected throughout the summer. They are 3-5 inches in diameter and have wonderfully thick, flavorful hearts.

How many buds does a green globe artichoke plant have?

Green Globe artichoke plants produce three to four buds, which are 2 to 5 inches (5-13 cm.) in diameter. If the artichoke bud is not harvested, it will open into an attractive purple thistle-like flower. Green Globe Improved artichoke plants require a 120 day growing season, so direct sowing of seed in the spring is not recommended.

How tall do green globe artichoke plants grow?

Green Globe artichoke plants grow to height of 4 feet (1 m.). The flower bud, the edible part of the artichoke plant, develops on a tall stem from the center of the plant. Green Globe artichoke plants produce three to four buds, which are 2 to 5 inches (5-13 cm.) in diameter.

Is a globe artichoke edible?

An ornamental edible with great appeal. Once cultivated to be enjoyed at Victorian dinners and society soirées, the Globe Artichoke is now prized for its wonderful thistlelike blooms and silvery foliage. Plus, it grows to a stately 8′ tall, making it a fantastic anchor plant for mixed beds, cutting gardens or back borders.

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