Well the season has begun. These balmy Washington temperatures had me out of doors today at the potting bench setting up a tray to start artichokes in. Artichokes are finicky as seedlings ... prone to damping off. So after years of trial and error here is my solution. I score each seed need the tip with a nail file. Then I set out 12 seeds on wet paper (6 Northern Star and 6 Emerald) over night. Meanwhile I prepare the trays with a germinating mix and place the tray on a seed heating mat to warm up the soil.
Once planted, I monitor the moisture carefully erring on the side of dry rather than wet. If I have to be away from home for a time, I will remove from the heat and just let them sit in the open air.
In honor of the day, I bought two luscious California artichokes to have for dinner. Yum