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Cynara cardunculus
( Gigante Cardoon )

'Gigante' is an Italian selection which is excellent when blanched (for instructions on blanching cardoons, see below). Cardoons are a relative of the artichoke, and require much the same cultural conditions and care. Plant indoors about 8 weeks before the soil warms, and then harden off and transplant shallowly outside. Space the plants 24 inches apart in rows 3 feet apart. If you want your cardoons to produce perennially, cut the stalks to 8 inches in early winter, and bury with straw. Next years' crop will be rooted offshoots of these parent plants. Harvest: While growing, blanch the stalks by wrapping them in newspaper and tying with twine. The leaves can be eaten fresh like celery, or cooked.
Important Info : It is the fleshy stalk and leaves of cardoon which are eaten.


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Characteristics
Cultivar: Gigante  
Family: Asteraceae  
Size: Height: 0 ft. to 5 ft.
Width: 0 ft. to 4 ft.  
Plant Category: annuals and biennials, perennials,  
Plant Characteristics:  
Foliage Characteristics:  
Foliage Color:  
Flower Characteristics: erect, showy,  
Flower Color:  
Tolerances:  
Requirements
Bloomtime Range: not applicable  
USDA Hardiness Zone: 7 to 9  
AHS Heat Zone: Not defined for this plant  
Light Range: Sun to Full Sun  
pH Range: 5.5 to 7.5  
Soil Range: Some Sand to Loam  
Water Range: Normal to Moist  

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