Ahhhck, its the Cardoooon… cant say this one without a Scottish accent! hahah Makes sense as this is a relative to the common thistle as well as the artichoke, AND my favourite plant on the planet!!! hahaha
Not native here, but somehow one has found its way to my back yard, and its now two and hopefully more next year. This plant is a pollinators paradise! Those purple fronds are like STICKY ICKY ICKY and they are covered with bees from sun up to sun down in the summer. Sometimes, well often, bees will even fall asleep in them and spend the night!
Surprisingly this is edible, but not the head that resembles the artichoke, but the stems. They require to be boiled down and it seems like a heck of a process, with it bearing not the most tasty result, I hear, so I haven’t done it, but it’s possible and used in some Italian cooking! However one thing they are used for is their enzymes, which are a vegetarian way of helping in the production of cheese.
Could be described as an invasive weed, but this weed… too 😉