artichoke

A few of our vegetable firsts for 2013

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Heirloom zucchini, huge but still tasty!
Heirloom zucchini, huge but still tasty!

One of the great thing about growing our own food is that we can produce all sorts of things that aren’t commonly available in the supermarket. We also have the opportunity to try new things each year.

This year’s firsts for us:

  • Globe artichokes, which look great, even if they are quite a hassle to prepare for eating.
  • Florence fennel, which has been superb in salads and baked dishes.
  • Heirloom zucchini, which grow to a huge size, while still remaining tender and seed free.

Onwards to more experimentation!

Globe artichokes, which make quite a statement in the garden.
Globe artichokes, which make quite a statement in the garden.
Florence fennel -- delicious!
Florence fennel — delicious!

Purple artichoke in full flower

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Purple artichoke flower
Purple artichoke flower

This year we decided to grow artichokes, having seen a plant in the nursery while shopping for other herbs and vegetables.

In theory it was a Globe Artichoke, like the ones you buy in shops (and then eat). While it produces beautiful flowers, it was a struggle to find the edible part.

So I think it comes out after it’s finished flowering. Any tips for the specific variety to look for, in terms of easy harvesting and eating?

Purple artichoke
Purple artichoke in closeup