My final Globe and Mail article for the 2010 growing season was on growing and eating cardoon.Cardoon is lesser-known relative of the artichoke that is considered a delicacy in Mediterranean cuisine. I've been growing cardoon for several years now with varying degrees of success. They also flower with the characteristic artichoke-like flower. Both are cousins with thistles and like them have spikes on the edges of the leaves. Growing Cardoons. How to Grow Cardoons. The first year I grew a single plant and it was big and beautiful and I fell in love with it, but it didn't survive the winter. They are popular in the Mediterranean countries. Cardoons are similar to globe artichokes in appearance but are grown for their stalks and thick midribs, which are blanched just before harvesting. It has become an extremely important medicinal herb in recent years following the discovery of cynarin. 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