Cynara cardunculus subsp. cardunculus is also known as Globe Artichoke or Artichoke. It is from the Asteraceae family of plants and subspecies of flowering thistles. It is native to Southern Europe and the Mediterranean region. Cynara cardunculus subsp. cardunculus can grow to 6ft or 2m high as well as across. The flower is edible, called an Artichoke, it has plump petals and a fleshy interior. The buds are the size of ping-pong or golf ball and range in color from green to purple.
This plant has been depicted in pictures for centuries you can see it in mosaics from Roman time in the 2nd century. It is a perennial vegetable. Another species Cynara cardunculus subsp. flavescens or Cardoon has been cultivated for its plant-derived clotting enzymes and used for the production of ewe milk cheeses.
Cynara cardunculus subsp. cardunculus flowers from April to July. Plant it in well-drained and fertile soil. Deadhead to prolong flowering.