Globe artichokes are often grown as much for their huge silvery leaves and ornamental flowers as they are for the delicious edible buds. These imposing perennial plants also attract bees into the plot and they make a superb permanent feature in the vegetable plot or ornamental garden. They are easy to grow from seed; just give them plenty of space and a sunny site. Pick the artichokes when the buds are large but before they flower and cook by steaming them.
To eat discard the fluffy inside (known as the choke), dip the scales in butter and eat the tender tips. The pale fleshy part at the base of the artichoke bud is also edible and considered a delicacy.