This is the artichoke on our neighbour Ruth’s plot whose globes we tried to eat for dinner (in exchange for lettuces). The globes were heartless and someone suggested this was because it was in actual fact a cardoon and not an artichoke (the edible part of a cardoon are the leaves). I searched the net for a picture of someone else’s artichoke to compare and found myself browsing a community wiki for a city called Davis in California. The resemblance between the two plants on different sides of the world was striking. A week later I found a good reason for that – they are both artichokes afterall!
Anyway I thought I’d leave the rest of the post as it was because I enjoyed the tangent my searching for artichoke advice took. Apparently most globe artichokes in American grocery stores are grown in coastal California because of its frost-free climate and cool, foggy summers. The summers in Davis are too hot though so instead they have a gorgeous array of exotic flowers and trees and an inspiring story of a mayor named Julie Partansky who planted fruit trees in all the empty parking lots and unbuilt areas to provide food for the homeless. Sadly Julie passed away in January and reading about the legacy of her life and work in Davis left me thinking about things that have nothing at all to do with artichokes. What’s the difference I’ll make and be remembered for I wonder?