Blooming Artichoke, originally uploaded by RemyOmar.
Favourite foods can take us by surprise when viewed in an unfamiliar context.
Artichokes - a favourite of mine - are actually the heads of a large (1.5-2 m tall), immature thistle. If left unharvested, they will bloom.
A Mediterranean native, Cynara cardunculus is considered invasive in the southern United States. Efforts are being made to eradicate the alien and replace it with native species.