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) 20-40cm 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 1-2cm/half-inch in diameter. Leave the rest to grow into the leafy ferns (1.5m/5-6ft 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

20 Oct 22, Shelby Stone (USA - Zone 7b climate)
How do I start asparagus from seed in the fall? Do I sow directly into the ground or start indoors? Zone 7b Thank you!
25 Oct 22, Anonymous (USA - Zone 7b climate)
It suggests to plant Nov Dec. Start them in pots or trays. They are very fine little seedlings and need close attention with watering. Some sun, some shade during the day until they are a few inches high.
08 Aug 22, Sheila (USA - Zone 6b climate)
One 6b - Bought crowns in late spring and they were misplaced.until now August. They are not dried out and I'd like to salvage whatever is possible. If I plant them now ANDif they grow, the season will be over and cold by October. Should I refrigerate the crowns and maybe wait til spring to plant or go ahead and put them out now? Also, would it be of benefit to use innoculant to stimulate them, individually pot them indoors under grow lights and gently transplant to an outside bed in spring? What makes sense?
14 Jun 22, Desert dwelling gardener wannabe (USA - Zone 9b climate)
What is the best variety of asparagus to grow in zone 9b?
17 Jun 22, Anonymous (USA - Zone 9b climate)
No planting time for asparagus in your climate zone. Maybe wrong climate.
26 Oct 22, Martin McOmber (USA - Zone 9b climate)
I am learning to grow asparagus in Zone 9b. Plants are 2+ yrs old and starting to produce healthy spears. Would like suggestions on how best to grow them.
19 Apr 22, Dawn (USA - Zone 10a climate)
When you buy crowns does only one shoot grow from one crown? It looks like from pictures that there is more shoots coming up if your planting them 8 to 12 inches apart? Since we live in central coastal California is it best to go to a nursery in town for buying the two year old crowns?
21 Apr 22, (USA - Zone 5a climate)
The crown will produce many spears. As it grows it produces more and more over the years. Plant 2' apart. Buy 1 or 2 year crowns.
27 Jan 22, Lori (USA - Zone 9b climate)
I planted Asparagus last year. It has done very well and I fertilized,mulched when need to , or cut ferns when need. My question is, at the end of December, a few Asparagus began popping up, and tips purple. Is it ok for them to pop up that early?
28 Jan 22, Anonymous of Bundaberg (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
You generally cut ferns off end of Winter and pick new spears for 2-3 months in the Spring, then let the ferns grow again to feed the crown for the following year. If the weather is warm enough they will keep sending up new spears until end of Autumn. I just cut mine off for a quick feed over the last month of summer. Mine are 5-6 years old. I'm in Australia - sub tropical.
Showing 1 - 10 of 56 comments

No planting time for asparagus in your climate zone. Maybe wrong climate.

- Anonymous

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