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Artichoke Flowers

Debra Redalia


I just wanted to show you these gorgeous artichoke flowers I saw at the farmer’s market last week. This photo does not do the color justice. The purple is absolutely luminous.

They are not edible, but this is what happens to an artichoke if it is not picked an eaten.

I’m showing this to you because part of the wholeness of food is the entire life of the plant that makes the edible parts. Just to be aware of the whole process of a food growing and going through the whole cycle from start to finish and where the part your eating is in the cycle.

Artichokes are a thistle. The part we eat is the bud of the thistle before it comes into bloom.

When we visited the French Laundry Kitchen Garden there were a number of artichoke plants that had been allowed to bloom. The plants were taller than Larry’s 6-foot height and had these beautiful blossoms.

Hmmmm, I’m not finding a diagram of the lifecycle of an artichoke plant. I think I’m going to have to create these myself for foods we are eating.