Picture Snob

September 20, 2010

My first artichoke is very sad

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As we know, our best efforts don't always work and my artichoke experiment is looking less than successful. The picture above shows what I imagined my harvest to look like. One of the four plants I put in the garden sent up a stalk. The head was very small and as I walked by the plant today, I snipped it off and saw that the whole inside was eaten out by some black fungus.

Now I've done a little more reseach on artichokes and find they are native to the Mediterranean and don't like frozen ground in winter although with some care they can be grown in my area. The also like fairly cool summers which is really not possible where I live. The three remaining plants look fine and show no signs of either disease or of sending up a stalk. I'm going to mulch them for protection this winter.

It seems my one budding artichoke has bacterial crown rot. The plant is stunted. It didn't show any tendency to wilt but the crown and tap root tissues become soft, rotted, and turn brown or black. Infected crowns are readily identified after cutting because blackened tissue can be seen in the cross section of the stem.

sigh

I'm not going to compost this crown for fear of spreading the infection. I'll take it and toss it over a bank on the way to town where it won't hurt anything. Northern Star is the variety to plant if you have cold winters. I'm going to keep on trying with the plants I have.

At Green Globe Artichoke - 8 Plants - Artichokes this Year

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Posted by Marilyn Renaker at September 20, 2010 8:50 AM
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