I started a few artichokes this spring. Now I need to mulch them for
the winter. Are the leaves going to die back or do they stay green?
I'd like to just pile leaves over them and pull them off in the
spring. If the leaves stay green I suppose I should just pile the
leaves around the plants. Anyone familiar with this?
Artichokes aren't hardy in Zone 5. The leaves don't die back, or
at least, they didn't in my garden in Zone 3/4 this year, then
we got 18" of snow in one night, so the plants got covered with
snow before the ground froze. (The plants survived many hard
killing frosts before we got snow.)
If you want to experiment, try mulching the plants with *lots*
of leaves, straw or whatever you have. Make it good and deep to
protect the roots. Then pray for deep snow that lasts all winter.
Let us know how you do. I was going to dig up my artichoke roots
before the ground froze, but we got that unexpected deep snow
before I finished cleaning the garden out. I'm *really* hoping
that the 'choke roots will survive winter and grow again next
year. (Artichokes are one of my "food groups." Garlic is another
If you have to start over again, get some seeds and start them
in January. 'Choke plants take a long time to grow, so give them
a huge head-start on the season, if you can. Artichokes and
tomatoes are the two veggies that are worth all of the bother of
setting up grow lights in the middle of the winter.
Check the Pinetree Seeds catalog -- I think they sell the
'choke seeds that do good in our shorter growing seasons.
Jan, in Alaska
USDA Zone 3 or 4, depending on who you ask
The way to a man's heart is between the fourth and the fifth rib.
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