Asparagus – Delicious Perennial

in #gardening4 years ago

The great thing about asparagus is that once its established maintenance is a cinch (relatively speaking of course). It does require some upfront work when planting however. I used two raised beds to make one long row of asparagus. Since asparagus should be planted 10-12” deep, you eliminate some of the excavating by using raised beds. Here is a picture of my beds this spring with a few spears popping up.

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You should purchase two year old roots if you decide to grow asparagus. That way you should be able to start with a small harvest the second year. After that your beds will produce many years with just a little maintenance.

I started with the empty boxes and dug a trench several inches deep down the center of them. My boxes are 6” deep so I was around 10” down from the top of my boxes after digging the trench. I added organic matter into the trench along with some organic fertilizer. Add a little lime also if your soil is acidic. Spread the roots out so the crowns are facing up when planting and space them around 1.5-2 feet apart.

I back filled with compost and mushroom soil mixed with the top soil I had from the trench. You should only cover the roots with a few inches of soil at first. As the skinny pencil like spears emerge, continue to backfill until your bed is flush with the ground or as in my case the top of the box.

Do not pick the first year. Allow the spears to grow into fern like plants and just enjoy their beauty. The second year you can harvest for about four weeks as they begin emerging in the spring. After the second year you can probably harvest 6 weeks before letting them turn into ferns.

When you stop harvesting your plants should look like this.

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And then this.

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The roots will continue to shoot up new spears throughout the summer especially after heavy rains. Let them all grow into ferns to provide fuel to the roots for next year’s harvest. They don’t require a lot of water but if you are under a drought situation you will probably need to supplement. Mulching is a good idea to protect the roots and keep down the weeds.

In late fall when the ferns start to die off, I cut them back at ground level and apply fertilizer and lime along with a top dressing of compost to help with next year’s crop. You may elect to keep the ferns through the winter and cut in early spring. This provides safe refuge for beneficial insects and provides some esthetics during the winter. That’s totally up to you – either way works.

Thanks for reading and good luck with your asparagus.

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I have never seen the asparagus actually grow that far out of the ground. It's interesting to see the actual plant. I'm so used to seeing in video's just the harvest the spears coming out of the ground. It makes a lot of sense to let it grow out for the first year so the root base gets set. Thanks for the information!

Your welcome. Glad to help.

Asparagus has always fascinated me @garden-to-eat! We don't have anyone planting them here in Mauritius though, we import normally!
Nice post!
Cheers
@progressivechef

Thanks. Pass my post along to your farmers and get them to plant some for you lol.

hahaha! That would be a great idea, but i think I am going to give it a try myself! Apparently it does not adapt to our climate!
I have to learn more before starting though!

I used to go wild foraging for asparagus. 2 years ago we decided two plant some in our garden. It's much easier when they're right outside.

Interesting. I didn't know it grew wild.

Yes, Check out the roadsides for the fully grown asparagus. The next year you can go to that spot and collect them in the spring. BTW, our kids love doing this with us

I have never grown asparagus or seen it growing before. It's very interesting to see. I had no idea it grows so tall

Yes and actually the fern like plants are very attractive if you can keep them standing.

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Good to see how asparagus progresses.

I planted asparagus for the first time this year. I used a new 12 inch deep bed and filled with compost and soil. All the crowns came up and are now tall ferns. The stems were very thin of course, so I will have to wait another year (or two) before I can start harvesting them.

Sounds like you did it right. You should be rewarded for years now.

nice i wish one of this in my home

This is fascinating! Thanks for covering the process. I love asparagus, and I've just started doing my own gardening this season, however, I haven't attempted asparagus yet. I see you're also a health nut, and I've followed you and look forward to seeing more of your gardening and health related posts :)

That's great. Thanks for following. I have put quite a few gardening posts out already covering many of the things I grow. If you see something you want to grow give it a read maybe it will help.

I have to congratulate you...Asparagus is no easy feat to grow from seed. Well done! & A BIG UpVote.

Thanks. Didn't grow from seed though. Two year old roots.