It was with a bit of excitement this next photo comes from as it looks somewhat like an artichoke plant just along the side of a bike path. There were actually several of these plants along a stretch of new bike path that I had never biked on before. It is obvious (speaking from complete ignorance) from the same general plant family.
I wish I had taken the camera out earlier in the day when I walked by the nice large artichoke plant at Mustard Seed School so that I could compare the two plants.
In the end I decided it was just a thistle.