How To Grow Asparagus

You should leave your asparagus plants alone during their first growing season. This will help to build up the heavy roots that are needed to produce thick spears. Planting crowns will produce a quicker crop than asparagus that is grown from seeds.

  1. Prepare your asparagus beds as if they were to last a lifetime. In fact, they may last up to 20 years. The best areas to place your asparagus beds are either at the sides or ends of your garden. This will ensure that your beds are not disturbed when you cultivate your garden.
  2. Work a generous amount of organic matter deeply into the soil.
  3. Add manure to the soil. Spread manure about two inches thick and then work it into the soil using a pitch fork.
  4. If the soil is slow draining, you should add sharp sand to it.
  5. You should add enough organic matter to your soil to raise the asparagus bed about six inches. Your asparagus beds should be no wider than four feet.
  6. Once you have your soil prepared, you should make trenches that are about six inches deep down the center of your asparagus beds. Continue to add more trenches, spacing them about 15 inches apart.
  7. Set your seedlings (or crowns) in the ditches and water thoroughly.
  8. Cover the seedlings with one to three inches of soil.
  9. As the seedlings grow, pull more soil into the ditch around the plants until the ditch is completely filled.
  10. You can fertilize your asparagus beds much like you would the rest of your garden. You can apply a 10-10-10 fertilizer at the rate of two pounds per 100 square feet.
  11. You should keep the ground loosened around your asparagus plants. Cultivate to a depth of one inch to keep weeds under control.
  12. If you want your asparagus to be blanched, you can mound organic mulch over your asparagus beds.
  13. To harvest, you should cut the spears when they are about seven inches high. Hold the cutter at a low angle and dig no deeper than one inch into the soil to cut the spears. Be mindful of the roots and try not to damage them when you are cutting the spears.
  14. You should stop harvesting when hot weather begins in your region. You should then apply a mixture of 4-8-4 fertilizer to the beds at a rate of one pound per 75 feet. This will promote growth which will result in a large amount of food storage in the roots. This will greatly impact next season's crop.


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