Q:

What are some tips for growing and harvesting asparagus?

A:

Quick Answer

Grow asparagus in soil with a pH of 6.5 to 7, and work fertilizer into the top 6 inches of soil before planting the crowns in the spring. Plant all-male hybrids, such as the Jersey Knight, to ensure an abundant harvest. Sow the asparagus crowns directly in the garden when soil temperatures reach 50 F, and harvest the asparagus when the stalks are 5 to 7 inches in height. Harvest the asparagus sparingly the first year.

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Full Answer

To plant the crowns, spread super-phosphate in the bottom of a 5 to 6-inch deep furrow. Then set the crowns into the bottom of the furrow, covering loosely with dirt. When necessary, weed the garden bed by hand to avoid damaging the roots of the asparagus with gardening tools.

Allow 5 feet between rows of asparagus, or 1 foot between each plant when growing asparagus in a raised bed. Asparagus is a perennial that is often planted in a sunny, out-of-the way locations. This avoids disturbing the plant after it is established.

Water asparagus frequently during the first three to five years of growth. The first year, harvest a few stalks from each crown, and gradually increase the amount of asparagus harvested each year. After the growing season ends, cut the stalks off at the base to promote new growth the following season.

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