We came across these artichokes at a Greenmarket in midtown Manhattan and were baffled.
We know that Greenmarkets are only permitted to sell local products. We also knew that, as artichoke.org says, "Nearly one hundred percent of all artichokes grown commercially in the United States are grown in California."
Not these baby artichokes! This batch of baby artichokes was grown in New Jersey. These artichokes are selling for $6/pound from Maxwell's Farms. We were told these artichokes went into the ground in February for harvest in July and August.
"Artichokes will only tolerate a mild frost and are not hardy enough to grow as a perennial crop in the northeastern United States. New varieties, however, make it possible to produce artichokes annually in New Jersey ... for local specialty markets or home garden use," as Rutgers Agricultural Experimentation Station reports.
If you're making exciting finds in your local farmer's market, or have questions about cooking with what you find, let us know how we can help.