Read part 1. ← Artichoke: varieties, agricultural technology, diseases and pests
It's time to harvest
Artichoke like medicinal plant, especially useful for people who have increased acidity of gastric juice, since the plant contains a significant amount of potassium and sodium salts, which have a strong alkaline effect. It is also recommended as a means of preventing the development of atherosclerosis.
Tsinarin contained in the plant has a choleretic and diuretic effect, so a decoction of leaves and artichoke juice are taken for diseases of the liver and biliary tract. The same cynarin is a natural flavor enhancer.
The artichoke is rich in vitamins A, groups B, C, rich in carbohydrates and specific aromatic substances that give it a unique, unlike anything else taste. It also contains a relatively large amount of proteins, carotene, inulin (normalizes metabolism), and iron. The leaves of the plant also have beneficial substances, this is the same cynarin and very useful acids. Artichoke is useful for constipation - improves intestinal motility. It is able to remove salts of heavy metals, radionuclides, toxins from the body. It is for this reason that Queen Maria de Medici always carried the extract of this plant with her, as it was considered an antidote.
It is also useful for urinary retention and dropsy. Since the artichoke lowers the level of cholesterol and urea in the blood, it is especially suitable for patients with advanced forms of metabolic disorders (atherosclerosis, gout).
Artichoke juice mixed with honey used for rinsing the mouth with stomatitis, cracks in the tongue in children. Vietnamese from the aerial parts of the artichoke prepare a dietary tea with a pleasant aroma, instantly relieving inflammation from the mucous membrane of the gastrointestinal tract.
Artichoke leaf infusion
For infusion, take 10 g of dry or fresh artichoke leaves and brew in 100 ml of boiling water. You need to put half a spoonful of honey in the broth, drink it warm in two steps.
Infusion for diseases of the kidneys and liver
With a glass of boiling water, brew 2 teaspoons of dry artichoke leaves and leave for 10 minutes, then filter and drink three times a day, 15-20 minutes before meals, 0.5 cups.
Artichoke leaf tincture
Pour 50 grams of dry leaves of the sowing artichoke plant with 100 milliliters of 70% alcohol. Then insist for 15 days, filter. Take 1 to 2 tablespoons in half a glass of water three times a day.
Of course, artichoke, like any product, has some contraindications. Contraindications are associated mainly with potassium and calcium salts, which have a strong alkalizing effect. Therefore, the artichoke is not recommended for people with low stomach acidity. It is also not recommended under reduced pressure.
Artichoke seed should not be consumed by women who are breastfeeding, as the plant reduces milk production. In the presence of stones in the gallbladder, it is also undesirable to use artichoke preparations.
Read part 3. Artichoke recipes →
Tatiana Lybina, gardener,
Zhezkazgan, Republic of Kazakhstan
Late sowing of seeds leads to the fact that the harvest can only be harvested the next year
The artichoke is an undemanding plant. In our conditions, we have to achieve good results with excellent care and the creation of "greenhouse" conditions. Therefore: 1) we do not press the plants, 2) we plant them in a nutritious loose soil of sufficient moisture, 3) we choose a sunny place, 4) we do our best to protect the plant from the vagaries of nature. For example, we plant it under the film, pulling it on high arcs or poles. The planting hole should be about 50-60 cm deep. The planting pattern is 70 x 70 cm. The best option is to grow artichokes in a greenhouse. I had to give it up as there was almost no room left for other cultures. In hot summer, I leave two-meter artichokes to grow without shelter (from the sheltered south side of the house). When the weather worsens, I make a "tent" of lutrasil or a thin plastic film.
Regular watering is important for freshly planted seedlings and for the growth of artichokes until the buds emerge. Later, watering is reduced, but the soil is not brought to dry out for a long time.
I feed artichokes with complex fertilizers for vegetable crops. I turn to ash as soon as the baskets of inflorescences begin to appear.
Aphids that stick around the stems can be a problem. This plant has practically no other serious pests and diseases.
Artichokes are perennial plants that can winter in warm countries. But not with us. They freeze even in the greenhouse. No insulation options help.
In the second year of the plant's life, its yield and the quality of the baskets increase markedly. Therefore, it makes sense to save the perennial in the harsh winter time. This can be done if you cut off all the stems, remove excess leaves (reduce their number) and carefully transplant the plant into a large pot or place it with a lump of earth in a bag. Keep artichokes cool in winter. It is better if it is at least slightly illuminated.
Overwintered artichokes can become a mother plant from which cuttings (young shoots) are cut. They root well in a light substrate.
The artichoke is a perennial plant. Therefore, it is grown in the garden for two to three years. Harvesting of artichokes begins annually in early July. In the first year after planting, no more than 5-6 baskets are formed on the plants, which are used to prepare various dishes.
First of all, the main inflorescences, which have not yet had time to bloom, are cut off, and then it is the turn of the lateral inflorescences. Only unblown fleshy baskets are cut off. It is important not to miss the time of harvesting the artichoke. Otherwise, you will get an ordinary blooming flower.
Every year the number of artichoke baskets increases. In the second year, there can be up to 10 pieces, and in the third year - up to 12 pieces. After that, the artichoke is completely dug up and a new one is planted. An older plant is no longer suitable for cooking, and it bears fruit much worse.
After harvesting, the main stems are cut, all plant residues are removed, and the beds with artichoke plantings are sprinkled with straw.
Then you can prepare various dishes from the artichoke. Smaller specimens of the plant are eaten whole as a side dish, and they can also be canned and pickled. But large artichokes are suitable for preparing salads and adding to other hot dishes.
Why does everyone say artichoke is delicious? It is useful, dietary, curative - yes, we do not deny it. But the taste. There is simply no taste - grass. Yes, and harsh.
An artichoke harvested on time has a pleasant young nut flavor. It is best to eat inflorescences that have not yet opened - dense, heavy, with fleshy, densely planted leaves. If the leaves begin to turn brown, the basket has aged and is not suitable for eating. If the inflorescence has already begun to open before flowering, they are also late. In addition, artichokes are eaten not only raw: they are boiled, having removed the core, for 20-30 minutes with the addition of vinegar or citric acid. You can serve it hot as a side dish, and cold as an appetizer, seasoning with any sauce you are accustomed to, chopped herbs, hot spices.
Vodyanika is a creeping small shrub that reaches a height of only 20 centimeters. The stems can be up to 1 meter long. Such a plant is similar in its characteristics to lingonberries. This shrub grows in clumps, while adventitious roots can grow on its branches, due to which the clump constantly grows, while there is a gradual dying off of the branches in the middle of the bush. Strongly branching shoots are colored dark brown. Alternately located leathery leaf plates are outwardly similar to the needles of spruce, they densely cover the shoots. Each of the leaf plates does not fall off the bush for 5 years. Axillary flowers have 3 petals, which can be colored red, purple or pink. These flowers are inconspicuous. In middle latitudes, shiksha blooms in April or May, while in Siberia - in May or June. For pollination, these shrubs require pollinating insects such as bees, butterflies and flies. Outwardly, shiksha berries are similar to blueberries. They are juicy sour fruits of a spherical shape and black color, which can reach 5.5 cm in diameter, they have 4 seeds inside, and a bluish bloom on the surface. The beginning of their ripening occurs in August, while they do not fall from the bushes throughout the winter. The juice obtained from such fruits has a purple color. Crowberry thickets are called shikshevniks or crows.
Also, this plant is distinguished by one more feature, it grows in symbiosis with a special fungus. It settles in the root system of a shrub and supplies it with photosynthetic products.
We grow delicious vegetables and fruits in our garden, create a beautiful flower garden.
"There are no two identical gardens and two identical days in the same garden"
Cholecystitis, liver cirrhosis, hepatitis, nephritis, renal failure - 25 g of chopped inflorescences pour 0.3 l. boiling water. Insist 1 hour in a sealed container, drain. Take 100 ml. three times a day 30 minutes before meals. Dry leaves can be used instead of inflorescences. In this case, a dessert spoon of raw materials is poured with the same amount of boiling water, but insisted for half an hour. The recommendations for use do not differ from the first option.
High cholesterol- pour 50 g of dried leaves with 100 ml. vodka. Insist 15 days in a cool, dark place, drain. Take 2 times a day half an hour before meals, adding a teaspoon of tincture to 0.5 cups of water.
Dropsy, urinary retention, biliary dyskinesia - chop the dried leaves and roots of the plant. Pour 1 teaspoon of raw materials with a glass of boiling water. After an hour's infusion in a thermos, strain. Drink during the day in small portions.
Stomatitis - Wash and grind fresh leaves and inflorescences. After a few layers of cheesecloth, squeeze out the juice. Dilute in warm water in a 1: 5 ratio. Rinse your mouth several times a day.
Hair loss - Rub the juice into the scalp twice a day for 10-15 days.