I usually give up trying to grow a plant, if I haven't had success after three tries. This is my third time growing Cardoon and so far so good! The blooms of Cynara cardunculus typically don't bloom until their second year. I'm crossing my fingers because the purple thistle like flowers are spectacular.
I've renamed this vine Sweet Hotter than Hell Clematis, since in Texas it blooms in late August and early September. The hot summer sun magnifies its sweet heady fragrance. By the time the part of year it's name for comes around the blooms are pretty much spent. This Clematis climbs up an arbor in close vicinity to a huge American Beautyberry and an elderly Crepe Myrtle, which both contrast nicely with its pristine white flowers.
I started growing several varieties of Celosia years ago. All of the different varieties seem to have morphed into this one type which self seeds every year. Without fail, I'm guaranteed blooms in the very very hottest time of the year. That time of the year is now!