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

18 Jan 23, Ericka Wojcik (USA - Zone 9a climate)
Any one have succes growing in 9b?
23 Jan 23, Anonymous (USA - Zone 9b climate)
Not suited to your climate by the look.
05 Dec 22, Jennifer (USA - Zone 8a climate)
I am in southeastern coastal North Carolina and planted asparagus last Feb. They did awesome, and still are doing great, so I don’t know when to cut them back so they start growing next year. They are very tall and full. (Some of them are starting to turn yellow but only a few.) We haven’t cut anything since they were planted. Any advice on when to cut them back is appreciated.
16 Dec 22, Mindi (USA - Zone 8a climate)
Wait until the ferns are fully brown and dormant to maximize the next year's harvest. https://www.gardeningknowhow.com › edible › vegetables › asparagus › cutting-asparagus-foliage-back-in-autumn.htm Tips On Cutting Back Asparagus Plants - Gardening Know How Once you have cut the asparagus back, add several inches (10 cm.) of mulch to your asparagus bed. This will help to smother the weeds in the bed and will help fertilize the bed for next year. Compost or well-rotted manure makes an excellent mulch for asparagus in autumn....
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.
Showing 1 - 10 of 60 comments

I planted Asparagus roots I’m in the 3rd season now and so far I have picked two batches. I tried seeds and they didn’t grow. You maybe able to buy the roots at a place where they sell plants. The roots are kept in a refrigerator.

- Lucy

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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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