Growing Asparagus

Aspargus officianalis : Asparagaceae / the asparagus family

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
    S                  
        T              

(Best months for growing Asparagus in USA - Zone 5a regions)

  • S = Plant undercover in seed trays
  • T = Plant out (transplant) seedlings
  • Easy to grow. Plant as crowns. Best planted at soil temperatures between 16°C and 30°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 20 - 40 cm apart
  • Harvest in 2-3 years. Plant 'crowns' to harvest earlier .
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Parsley, Basil, Nasturtiums, Lettuce
  • Avoid growing close to: Garlic, Onions, and root vegetables
  • Asparagus growing
  • Baby Asparagus Seedlings (approx 6cm/3in) ((c) Liz Hutchinson)

Plant crowns (roots) 20 - 40 cm apart and a few cm (1 inch) deep in well manured soil. The asparagus shoots grow in spring. Harvest the shoots which are bigger than 1 - 2 cm/half-inch in diameter. Leave the rest to grow into the leafy ferns (1.5 m/5 - 6 ft tall) which will feed the crowns to give a crop next year. In autumn the ferns will be covered in bright red poisonous berries.

Leave the ferns to die down in autumn, then trim off the dead stalks and pile on plenty of rotted manure/compost to give the roots plenty of food to produce new stems in spring.

Harvest by cutting off the stalk, close to the ground. From the third year you can get an additional crop by letting the first lot of ferns grow, then bending down the stalks to break them. A second crop of shoots will grow and can be harvested. Leave subsequent shoots to grow on to ferns. Asparagus does not like continuously wet and warm soil. It grows better where there is a cool or frosty season.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Asparagus

Steaming is traditional, then coating with melted butter or hollandaise sauce.
Alternatively break in short lengths, and cook quickly in hot oil in a wok and sprinkle with soy sauce or balsamic vinegar.

NOTE: The asparagus berries are poisonous. Only the young shoots are edible.

Your comments and tips

25 Feb 24, Sherry L (USA - Zone 8b climate)
Zone 8b, Central Georgia. Since we have pretty hot, scorching summers, would it be better to plant asparagus where it doesn't get full afternoon sun? Just afraid it couldn't take the heat.
15 Feb 24, John spence (USA - Zone 7a climate)
When and how is the best time to plant asparagus seed in zone 7a
19 Feb 24, (USA - Zone 9a climate)
Best time to plant crowns is February and March or November and December
11 Jan 24, James Bushdid (USA - Zone 9b climate)
Growing instruction in zone 9B, Ormond Beach, Florida.
21 Jan 24, James Bushdid (USA - Zone 9b climate)
Trying to grow from seed Mary Washington Asparagus any help you can give an old retired man. Thank you. (Area, EAST COAST OF FLORIDA, ORMOND BEACH, FLORIDA.
14 Jan 24, (USA - Zone 7a climate)
Google how to grow it.
02 Jan 24, Claire (USA - Zone 9b climate)
We have asparagus in raised beds in zone 9b and they are doing great going into our third year Give it a go what is there to lose ?
16 May 23, Marsha Kincaid (USA - Zone 7b climate)
Want to start my asparagus bed this Fall. When is best time? Are there different instructions than for Spring planting?
12 May 23, don jinks (USA - Zone 4a climate)
starting a new garden at new house what month should I plant the asparagus in zone 4 since Ive missed the spring planting?
13 May 23, (USA - Zone 4a climate)
It says plant now. Try crowns if you can get them.
Showing 1 - 10 of 75 comments

I am new to planting Asparagus seeds harvested from my garden. I live in the USA in Northeast (Rhode Island) I had a bumper crop of Aspargus this year and have harvested all the red Seeds: When and how should I plant these seeds?

- Anonymous

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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