Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show: Asparagus
I was never a fan of asparagus until I had dinner one night at a very lovely golf club. I don’t golf, I eat, drink and drive the cart. Anyway, that lovely dinner got me thinking about planting this perennial that’s prized by many. Frankly, I was THAT kid at the table who would try to sneak peas into my napkin, or sit at the table until everything was cold and my mom put my plate in the refrigerator (which dad said I had to eat for breakfast and mom never made me!! )
Harvest to Table has a lot of information about growing asparagus and troubleshooting any problems!
Gardeners have been growing asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) for more than 2,000 years, so apparently I’m in the minority. A well-maintained asparagus bed will start bearing one year after planting and will stay productive for 10 to 15 years.
While many sites I visited recommended optimal planting in the Spring, Fall is just fine as temperatures cool off. In fact you can purchase 2 year crowns from some nurseries that would be ready to harvest next season.
As the asparagus begins to grow, gradually fill in the furrow with soil. (Be careful not to cover any of the asparagus foliage.) The furrows should be filled to ground level by the end of the first growing season. Add organic fertilizer (about 1/4 cup per plant of granular) spreading the fertilizer on each side of the asparagus and cultivate it lightly into the soil. Keep your new plants well watered. Allow year 1 plants to grow into brush which looks like dill or a ferny bush. Late in the fall of the first growing season, after the brush has turned completely brown, remove the brush (old stalks) and any weeds.
Make sure you know whether you’re planting 1st or 2nd year plants. They can also be grown from seed indoors if you’re so inclined.
Check out my Facebook page “Garden Bite with Teri Knight” for lots more pictures of gardens and to offer suggestions, comments and questions!
A very simple recipe is to sauté the asparagus with some quality olive oil and onion. I like the red onion and use Tuscan Herb olive oil but there are so many flavors in specialty shops!