Should I let my artichoke flower?

I live in southern Utah, zone 7-8. I planted some globe artichoke plants two years ago, and cut them down last year to make room for something else when I saw that the artichokes didn't seem to be doing very well. (In fact, I think I complained about them here!) Unbeknownst to me, this is what you're SUPPOSED to do to make them strong and healthy, so this year I've got some nice big artichoke plants.
I see a bud on ONE of them. I assume there won't be many more this year, since they are still pretty young. We are trying to decide whether to eat it or let it bloom for beauty. Just one artichoke wouldn't make much of a meal, so I am sort of curious to see the flower. But what I want to know is...Is it better for future production to allow this to flower, or to cut it off, or does it even matter? If letting it flower would somehow stunt the growth of other buds, then I'd cut it off, but if it doesn't, then I'd like to let it flower.
Does anyone know the answer to this? --S.
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Suzanne D. wrote:

Cutting the topmost bud will encourage budding in the lower axils. You may well get enough for a meal this season as they do bloom over a period of time, what you see now is not necessarily what you get, if not enough for a meal the chances are you will get at least one more so you can let it go and see what the flower is like.
David
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Okay, cool, good to know. I'll cut it when it gets big enough. Exciting--my very first artichoke! --S.
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