In warmer areas it can be a perennial but for most of us where the temperatures drop artichokes are an annual. Artichokes are easier to grow than you think. Simply follow these steps and you will be well on your way to a healthy artichoke harvest.
Starting with the planting depth, artichoke seeds are fairly average in size. This means you can plant them fairly deep, up to a quarter inch beneath the surface, and they will be able to push through the soil with ease.
Artichokes thrive well in warmer temperatures and even better so if you can get the ground temps to be between seventy to eighty degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 27 Celsius). If the growing time with warmer temperatures is limited in your area, then start them indoors around eight to ten weeks prior to the final frost of the season.
Many vegetable gardeners overlook the pH balance of their soil. However, this simple measurement could be the difference between artichokes thriving and merely surviving. Luckily for us vegetable gardeners, artichokes do well in a pH range from 6.5 to 8.0, meaning slightly acidic to slightly alkaline. A pH soil test kit is available at any home or garden center for about four dollars.
Now that you are ready to put your artichokes in the ground make sure you give them plenty of room between plantings. Twenty to twenty-four inches is ideal. Their roots will get plenty of room to expand, and that gives the plant plenty of space to get all the nutrients it needs to thrive.
Artichokes do well when they get plenty of sun, so make sure you put them in an area in your garden that gets a minimum of 8 hours of sunlight per day.
As for watering, artichokes like it heavy. Give them a daily dose of water or at minimum every other day. Invest in a soil moisture tester which measures the level of moisture in the soil. Keep that line on the tester above the three-quarter mark and you will be ok.
There is no question that you have the ability to grow great artichokes. It is one of the most overlooked vegetables for the home garden. Follow these tips and you will be well on your way to growing great tasting artichokes in your home vegetable garden.
About the Author
Michael C. Podlesny is a contributing writer for Mike the Gardener Enterprises, LLC the exclusive home for the Seeds of the Month Club. Enter the word article in the referral code box and receive a 50% discount on the price of any membership.