Asparagus is a vegetable that has been around for over two thousand years. It’s delicious and nutritious, and is quite easy to grow if you get the conditions right.
Asparagus is often grown in an asparagus bed, and, as a perennial vegetable, once planted it will crop annually with little trouble or maintenance.
Asparagus grows best in it’s own purpose made bed which should get a good amount of sunshine daily. Prepare the ground well, mixing in lots of compost and other organic matter to create good, crumbly and free flowing soil. Asparagus is most reliable when grown from crowns which should be planted 12 inches apart for best results.
How long does it take to grow asparagus?
Asparagus will grow in it’s first year but you should avoid harvesting any of the spears until the plant is at least two years old.
By leaving the plants alone in the first year, you give the plants an opportunity to mature and develop which will ensure better production in the ensuing years.
Is asparagus easy to grow?
Asparagus is relatively easy to grow if the conditions are right. It’s a very reliable and productive vegetable and produces for several years in most cases.
What month do you plant asparagus?
You should aim to plant your asparagus crowns in Spring – when the ground begins to warm, or in Fall before frosts.
Choose a sunny, well drained spot with soil that has been thoroughly dug over and enhanced with compost.
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What’s the best way to grow asparagus?
You should always choose asparagus crowns as opposed to seeds.
This vegetable can be grown from seeds but this can be time consuming and difficult.
The advantage of crowns is that they are the roots from mature plants that are more resilient and will quickly grow into adult plants.
You may find that you can only obtain asparagus crowns in Spring, so you should plan ahead and get the asparagus bed ready during the winter, in readiness for the crowns to be planted.
Does asparagus regrow after cutting?
The simple answer to this is yes, it does. Asparagus is a perennial plant which, like rhubarb, will regrow every year after you have cut the stems.
How much asparagus does each plant produce?
A typical asparagus plant will provide you with roughly half a pound of spears.
Does asparagus like full sun?
Asparagus will produce best in a sunny spot. The more sun it gets the better, as long as the soil can be kept well watered and has good drainage.
Full sun is always best for asparagus plants but they will also tolerate some shade during the day.
How much water does asparagus need?
Asparagus should be kept moist by watering regularly, particularly during dry spells.
Don’t be tempted to over water though – just give it enough to keep the soil damp but not too wet.
The moisture will come from rain or overhead irrigation and you should make sure that the crown is left dry at the end of each day so that there is no risk of rotting.
What’s a good fertilizer for asparagus?
It’s important to feed and fertilize your asparagus frequently in order to maintain high yields and quality harvest.
Water soluble fertilizers work best, being easy on the plant while increasing output considerably.
A slow release fertilizer can also be used if applied in Spring, and a fast acting fertilizer should be applied just before the harvest if needed.
The important thing to remember is that unless you feed asparagus regularly it will not perform well.
What’s the best time to plant asparagus?
Asparagus can be planted anytime from early spring right up until mid fall. Planting in late fall ensures the bed has time to establish itself over the winter – and once your plants begin growing in early spring you’ll have plenty of spears for cooking!
Generally speaking, planting in spring gives you an earlier harvest, while planting in fall gives a longer harvest season and produces slightly larger plants.
Does asparagus multiply?
As the plants grow and mature they will multiply and will spread out across the asparagus bed.
This can result in overcrowding and you may have to dig up some of the crowns to maintain good quality plants and harvests.
You can replant the removed crowns in a second bed, in pots or you could give them to another gardener.
How many asparagus crowns will I need?
Unless you are planning to grow on a large scale, 3 to 4 crowns will be enough for a family of 4.
Generally one crown per family member providing that everyone enjoys eating the vegetable.
How long does asparagus last?
Asparagus will keep fresh for several days if stored in a cool, dark place. You can freeze asparagus too and it will last for months in the freezer.
Some people prefer to cook their spears right away and enjoy them while they are fresh; others choose to blanch them and keep them on hand for later use.
How do you prepare asparagus?
Asparagus should be washed thoroughly before storing or cooking.
The spears should be snapped close to the bottom of the bed with your hands, then washed under cold running water to remove any dirt attached to the plants.
They can then be cooked straight away, or used in a variety of recipes.
What’s the difference between green and white asparagus?
Asparagus is grown for two different uses depending on how it’s harvested.
Green asparagus spears are colored this way because they have been grown in the daylight and have been allowed to soak up sunshine and as much light as possible.
White asparagus is grown in the dark, either underground or covered up to prevent light from reaching the stalks. White asparagus tends to be thicker and sweeter than the green version.
As long as you choose the right varieties and harvest your crop correctly, growing asparagus is easy.
It’s also an excellent source of vitamins A, C and K, with a low calorie content that makes it suitable for almost any diet!
1. Asparagus spears are delicious when steamed or used in soups – but cooking times can vary so keep an eye on these vegetables to make sure they don’t go mushy.
2. Your garden will look great planted with colorful flowers around the base of the bed. Spring bulbs such as tulips or daffodils make beautiful additions too!
3. Be careful not to over-harvest your plants – take all you need but leave plenty behind for the following year.