Artichokes: how and when to sow them

Artichokes, how and when to sow them to harvest several times a year. The complete guide on how to grow and sow the artichoke.

The artichoke it is a highly appreciated food for its precious nutritional and therapeutic qualities. The secret of its virtues lies in a substance called cinarina, is responsible for the typical unmistakable flavor of artichoke. Consumed since ancient times, the artichoke it was cultivated by the Egyptian people and later by the Greeks and Romans. Even today theartichokeit is highly appreciated and can be easily done cultivate in the vegetable gardeneven in the presence of ditches and steep slopes.

Artichoke: when it is harvested

The harvest period is from October to June and many species bloom several times during the year so as to give more crops.

Artichoke seeds

THEartichoke seedsthey are easy to find. On Amazon, a pack ofRoman artichokeyou buy at the price of 4.40 euros with shipping costs included in the price.

For all information on the product mentioned, I refer you to "this Amazon page". At the same price you can also buy thepurple artichokes from Provence. The purple artichokes from Provence are the ones shown in the photo below.

How to grow artichokes

The crops most extensive are in Liguria, Tuscany, Sardinia, Lazio and Puglia and Italy is currently the largest producer of artichokes in the world. On the market there are different qualities of artichoke, rounded or elongated, with or without thorns, in different shades of green and with purple hues. Let's see in detail how to grow artichokes following our directions.

  • The terrain

The artichoke prefers a sunny soil of medium texture preferably rich in organic substance. The soil must always be moist, neither too dry nor too clayey, and without water stagnation.
The soil must have a pH (degree of acidity of the soil) of about 6.5, it must also be fertile, therefore make a good organic fertilization based on mature manure or compost in advance.

  • Position

The ideal location for artichoke cultivation is south or southwest. It prefers mild and dry climates, fears frost and excessive climatic changes, especially immediately after planting, so if your garden is in a cold place, provide a non-woven fabric cover immediately after transplanting.

How to sow artichokes

Theartichoke Yessowing between February and March in a seedbed, placed in a protected environment. You can organize yourself with large pots with drain holes. If you opt for the sowing of the artichoke in the vegetable garden, you can continue between April and May.

Theredistanceamong the plantso planting size is 1 meter, in practice each plant must have a square meter of land available. It may seem like a lot to you but calculate that these are multi-year plants, you will have tosowonce and collect for the next two or three years, from the third year you can renew thecultivationtaking thecarduccifrom the mother plant.

Sowing the artichoke is generally an uncommon practice, even if the seeds are much cheaper than carducci or plants already developed, they take a long time to germinate and produce a mature plant.

When to sow: artichoke sowing period

For thecultivation of the artichokestarting from sowing you will need 150 - 180 days to go from sowing to planting the mature plant. For this reason we recommendsow the artichoke in pots, in a protected environment since February.

Multiplication of the artichoke with carducci

The most effective way to cultivate the artichoke it is the planting of carducci, to be taken from the large tufts of old plants. If it is the first cultivation, you can ask for them to those who already have an artichoke but alternatively you can buy them in a jar in the nursery ... or buy the seeds and start the first cultivation from here so as to produce the carduccifor subsequent crops.

At the time of planting, make sure that the carducci are well developed, 30-40 cm long and equipped with 4-5 leaves; then you can proceed by cutting the end of about 4-5 cm.

It is preferable to choose carducci with full-margin leaves as they produce a greater number
of flower heads and earlier. The planting of the carducci faints from mid-February to mid-April and from mid-September to the end of October.

How to grow artichokes with eggs

If, on the other hand, you prefer to use eggs for reproduction, the operation will be done in the summer (July-August). The ovoli are gems of different thicknesses that form at the base of the buried stem, which vegetate will give rise to the carducci.
Whatever the solution adopted, you will have to dig a hole of about 30-40 cm (also to move the ground a little), place the manure on the bottom and place the 'carduccio' at a depth of about 4 cm. The distance between the plants varies according to the species, but let's say 90 cm is the average size you will have to keep between plants.

When and how to irrigate artichokes

To obtain an abundant harvest, irrigation plays a fundamental role. Irrigate in such a way that
to ensure the plants a constant humidity of the soil. In general, in the southern areas, irrigation must be carried out in the summer months (July-August): this practice avoids the possibility that the plant goes into vegetative rest, thus allowing a considerable advance of production.

How and when to harvest artichokes

The harvest must be done when the stem is considerably elongated and the flower head has the bracts well closed and has reached the typical size of the variety. If you delay the collection, you will witness
an increase in the size of the flower head and as time passes it loses edibility.

Harvesting is done by hand: just make a beak cut on the stem, removing the flower heads with a portion of the stem 5-10 cm long: in this way it will be possible to increase the production per plant, since all the leaves are left more young and active.

Video: How to grow artichokes (January 2022).