Friday, October 5, 2012

Save the Artichokes!

After extensive Googling, I have not found any decisive material on whether or not artichokes can successfully be grown in Minnesota.  But I'm trying.

My mom and I bought the plant from a sale not knowing anything about them, but thought it would be fun to try. Now it's October and although the plants grew very large, there have been no artichokes.  This is not all bad news... several online blogs and articles say that artichokes do not produce fruit in the first year.

Herein lies the problem.  Artichokes are not hardy enough to withstand a Minnesota winter.  My challenge is to figure out how to save them as the show falls and the temperatures drop this season.

From various sources, here's what we came up with for an experiment.  I have no idea if it will work, but here it goes.

Step 1: Trim the artichokes back to about 12".

Step 2: Cover plants with 12" of straw.

Step 3: Top with Manure. (I used 1 5 gallon bucket per pile.)

Step 4: Cover with a dark colored tarp or plastic and secure.

Step 5: Hope for the best.

We'll have to see what, if anything, comes up next Spring! 

Special shout out to Fritz at Gleason Farms in Corcoran for hooking me up with both the straw and manure for this project!

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