The artichoke. Thistles on steroids. An architectural icon among foods you can grow. Whether you like to eat them or not... they will not be ignored in the garden or elsewhere. They erupt from the ground with bold felt-like foliage. Then they produce a bold flower bud swathed in a pattern of verdant leaf-like plates that if left to unfurl provide you with a main course so delicious your eyes will want more. Now, the only way to eat an artichoke is when it is in tight bud, but the beauty of letting it go to seed is intoxicating. The flowers themselves can form up to a 6 inch across electric light orchestra when they bloom. Use as a cut flower and see the reaction it gets. Cut just before the blooms are fully open.