Asparagus is a perennial plant that originated in the eastern Mediterranean and Asia Minor. The word "asparagus" comes from Greek and means "sprout" or "shoot."
Cultivation of Asparagus began over 2,000 years ago by the Romans. The asparagus was valued by both the Greeks and the Romans. Asparagus was known for its unique taste, texture and use in medicine. Asparagus became popular in France and England during the 16th century. The colonists then brought it to America. Asparagus is known as the "food of kings." King Louis XIV loved asparagus so much that a greenhouse was built so he could enjoy the vegetable all year round.