Growing Crops: Artichokes

Artichokes, also called Globe Artichokes, can be grown as an annual or a perennial (ideally as part of an edible landscape feature), depending on how much space you have available and how you prefer to grow them. Annual artichokes require a minimum of 100 days without frost, are planted in the Spring and harvested in the Fall. Perennial artichokes can be planted in Spring or Fall and harvested during either season, as well. Every 3 or 4 years carefully pull them out of the ground with the help of your garden fork, divide them, and then replant.

Best Climate to Grow: Cooler, moist climates. USDA Hardiness Zones 8 through 11.

Light Requirements: Lots of sun; will tolerate a little bit of shade.

Soil Requirements: Make sure your soil is well-prepared, particularly if you’re planting artichokes as a perennial. Ideal soil is loam that will hold moisture but drain well.

Feeding and Water Requirements: Organic fertilizer (manure is particularly effective for artichokes) every other week; soil must be kept moist at all times. Drip irrigation is ideal.

When to Plant Annual Artichokes: Plant seeds indoors about 5 weeks before the last frost date, and then harden off and transplant to the outdoor garden once the soil temperature has reached 70 degrees F.

When to Plant Perennial Artichokes: Sow seeds or cuttings directly in the ground in either the Spring or Fall.

Planting Depth and Spacing: If sowing directly into the ground, plant your seeds ½ to 1 inch deep (consult your seed packet for exact depth of your particular variety). Thin the seedlings as they grow. Artichokes are very bushy, tall plants, and require about a 4-5 foot diameter space in which to grow – particularly if you’re growing them to be perennials.

Container Requirements: Yes, artichokes can be grown in containers. Given the eventual size of the plant, the bigger the container, the better. More soil will hold more moisture and nutrients longer. We recommend you grow container artichokes as perennials and install drip irrigation specifically for container gardening.

Harvesting and Storing: If you’re growing perennials, you won’t harvest until the second year. To harvest, make a clean cut through the stem about an inch below the artichoke head. Fresh artichokes will keep for no more than a week in the refrigerator, and can also be frozen or pickled, if you are so inclined.

Pests to Monitor: Artichoke Plume Moth, Blackfly, Slugs, Snails. Visit our pest control beneficials, barriers, scare tactics, homemade organic pesticide, and commercial organic pesticide pages to see your options and choose your weapons.

HostGator Website Hosting