11 Stages Of Growing Asparagus: [Caring Asparagus In Raised Beds]

Asparagus is a perennial vegetable that requires patience to cultivate, but once you’ve figured out all the Stages Of Growing Asparagus, it’s incredibly rewarding. It’s high in vitamin C, and B, iron and other nutrients. Furthermore, there is no greater asparagus than freshly harvested shoots right from the garden.

If you enjoy asparagus and want to grow your own, now is the time to get started. Even with the finest of care, it will take years for asparagus beds to reach their full potential. Before planting it’s a piece of great advice to soak the crowns of manure tea for 20 minutes. Once planted, the tender spears will come back year after year because it is a perennial plant. Its ferny foliage also serves as a good decorative. From seed to harvest, how to cultivate asparagus is highlighted below.

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Asparagus Plant Profile

Below is a brief description of the asparagus plant.

Botanical Name            Asparagus Officinalis
Common Name     Asparagus
Plant Type        Perennial vegetable
Mature Size     5 feet tall, 3 feet wide
Sun ExposureFull sun
Soil Type          Sandy, loamy
Soil pHAcidic to neutral (6.0 to 7.0)
Bloom Time     Spring, summer, fall, winter
Hardiness Zones          Growing zone 4 to 9
Flower Color   Pale yellow, greenish
Toxicity              Non-toxic
Best Growing seasonSpring

Types Of Asparagus

Even though the same green stalks are usually available at the supermarket, asparagus comes in a range of hues and sizes. Here is a handful of asparagus varieties:

1. Jersey’ Series

Jersey Giant, a tough plant that thrives in cold areas, is one of this all-male family of hybrid asparagus types. Jersey Knight is one of the more robust asparagus varieties, with a strong resistance to diseases including asparagus crown rot and rust.

Jersey Supreme is a disease-resistant newer variety that yields spears faster than the Giant or Knight variety. Supreme is a good option for sandy, light soil, the jersey knight asparagus seeds develop faster than the other varieties.

2. Purple Passion

This extensively grown cultivar produces gorgeous, ultra-sweet purple spears, as its name implies. Do not even worry if purple asparagus doesn’t look attractive.

3. Apollo

This asparagus species thrives well in both cold and hot temperatures. It has a significant level of infection resistance.

4. UC 157

This is a hybrid asparagus strain that thrives in hotter regions. This disease-resistant asparagus comes in both male and female varieties.

5. Atlas

Atlas is a hardy cultivar that thrives in hot climates. This asparagus is resistant to various diseases, including fusarium rust, that affects the plant.

6. Mary Washington

This is a classic variety that comes with long, dark green spears with pale purple ends. Mary Washington has been a top choice of American farmers for more than a decade, thanks to its consistent size and tasty flavour

7. Précoce D’Argenteuil

This heirloom is another variety of asparagus, it is well-known in Europe for its delicious stalks, which are crowned with a lovely rosy pink tip.

Stages Of Growing Asparagus From Seed?

Below are the different stages in growing asparagus from seedlings.

Stage 1: Timing

During the winter and early spring, start seeds indoors under bright lighting. Be patient because you won’t be able to harvest these long-lived perennials for another three years after transplantation. The soil temperature should be between 21 and 30 degrees Celsius (70 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit) for germination.

Stage 2: Starting

Soak the seeds in water for 2 hours. Plant1 seed in a 1cm deep soil, each in a 5cm pot.Place in a warm location. Wait 2-8 weeks for them to sprout, all depending on the soil temperature.

Stage 3: Growing

  • Once the seedlings are ten to twelve weeks old and the threat of frost has passed, transplant them. In rows 1-2m apart, space of 45cm apart. Plant each plant in a 10cm deep hole and gently cover the asparagus crown with sand as it grows.
  • Set the buds fifteen to twenty cm in the hole and spread them thirty to thirty-five cm apart for thicker spears. Space the spears twenty to twenty-five cm apart, with the buds 10cm deep.
  • Fertilize with one to two cups of full organic fertilizer per three-meter row after harvesting and again during springtime. A two-centimetre measurement of water each week is required for asparagus.

How To grow asparagus from cuttings

How To Grow Asparagus From Cuttings
How To Grow Asparagus From Cuttings

Stage 4: Prepare the bed.

Make a 4-foot-wide bed. Get rid of all weeds from the bed, being careful not to leave any of the wood’s roots in the soil. Till the soil and rake in 10 to 15 inches of fertilizer, compost, blood, or bone meal.

Stage 5: Dig trenches that will be used for planting.

Trenches are required to be 15 to 30 cm deep and 12 to 30 cm wide.

Stage 6: Make ridges within the trenches.

Blend the soil to be used in the trenches with organic manure, and then spread5 to 7 cm of the supplemented soil into the bottom centre of each trench to make a centre ridge.

Stage 7: Soak the asparagus crowns.

Before planting, soak the crowns in a container of warm water or compost tea for a period of 15 minutes.

Stage 8: Plant the crowns.

Fill the trenches with crowns, spacing them 18 inches apart. Curl the roots over the ridges’ sides. Soil should be applied to the roots and crowns.

Over the roots and crowns, 5 to 7 centimetres of soil are required to be applied. After you’ve finished planting, thoroughly water the planting area.

Stage 9: Backfill the soil.

As you start to notice the asparagus flowering and the soil begins to settle, Cover the crowns with more soil. Every 2 to 3 weeks, cover the crowns with 1 to 3 inches of soil until the trenches are stuffed to the same level as the ground.

Stage 10: Mulch the plants.

After filling the trench, spread 4 to 8 inches of mulch all over the plants. Mulching helps to keep weeds at bay while also retaining soil moisture.

Growing Asparagus In Raised Beds

  1. Choose a location that receives full sun and Position the asparagus bed right at the edge of your garden, away from the activity of the garden.
  2. Check that the bed drains well and does not collect water. Asparagus dislikes having its roots being too wet. Asparagus grows best in soil that is neutral to slightly acidic (pH of about 6.5).
  3. To enable the asparagus crowns to establish roots properly and avoid being disrupted by rocks or other obstacles, the soil should be loosened to a depth of 12 to 15 inches.
  4. After preparing your bed then proceed to plant the asparagus either from seed or cuttings just as it was described above in the section where we analyzed how to plant asparagus seed.

How To Grow Asparagus In Pot

Here we highlight how to grow asparagus in a pot.

Step 1: Pick The Right Spot

Take the time to observe the available sunlight outside. Even in the winter, asparagus requires a minimum of 8-hours of direct sunlight every day.

Growing in containers has the advantage of allowing you to relocate the pot if you discover that you are not getting enough sunlight where you initially selected

Step 2: Select A Properly Sized Container For Asparagus

Choosing the right size container for growing asparagus is one of the most important decisions you’ll make. If your pot is too small, the entire operation may fail.

Asparagus requires a lot of space for its roots to spread out because it is a perennial, and containers could be quite restricting. This means that it is recommended to grow only one plant in each container.

Step 3: Add Gravel To Your Pot

This is a way to keep your plants from getting wet feet, which they despise. Drainage holes are required, but then you can also put gravels in the bottom of the pot. Put two inches of gravel in each container where you’re growing asparagus.

Step 4: Create The Right Soil For The Plants

Purchase a potting soil mix from your local farmer’s market. These are sterile soil blends made from compost, perlite, vermiculite, or peat moss. It’s made to keep moisture in, which is essential for container gardening. Asparagus grows best in soil with a pH between 6.5 to 7.5.

Also, you can learn for changing potting soil from time to time for better nutrients absorsion.

Step 5: proceed to start your asparagus from seed or cuttings depending on your preference.

Why Is My Asparagus Ferning Out?

Just like plant bolting, early ferning out of asparagus is most likely caused by temperature and adverse weather conditions. The hotter the plant is, the faster it starts to ferns out.

When To Cut Asparagus Ferns

Asparagus should ideally be pruned in the fall, but only after all of the foliage has died back and turned yellow.

When To Harvest

If you want to keep your asparagus bed productive, don’t get greedy with it. Start safe harvesting after a year of planting. Pick for fourteen days, then take a break to let the fronds unfold and begin nourishing the root system.

  1. The following year, harvest for three weeks, followed by four to six weeks the following year. If you pick too many spears, your plants will be unable to develop the strong root structure and energy reserves required to produce a plentiful crop of spears the following blooming season.
  2. The spear’s diameter does not influence its quality. TheSpears should be harvested when they reach a height of five to seven inches and before the tips start loosening.
  3. The spears will become hard and fibrous as the tips loosen. Trim or clip off the spears a little above the ground level to harvest them. The plant is not harmed by leaving a stub.
  4. Harvesting can continue until the bed is well-established until the bed provides only narrow spears with a diameter of less than a half-inch.
  5. Allow the spears to develop normally when the harvesting period finishes, which will be in late spring. They’ll reach a height of 4 to 6 feet and have delicate, light-green foliage. Maintain the bed by weeding, mulching, and watering it.
  6. The fronds will start getting discoloured as autumn approaches. It’s better to cut the fronds just over an inch above ground level and take them away from the location at this period.
  7. This will help prevent pests e.g the asparagus beetle from overwintering. It will also ensure that your bed is neat and ready for use the following spring.

How To Manage And Care For Asparagus?

Stages Of Growing Asparagus
Stages Of Growing Asparagus

1. Temperature

As soon as soil temperatures rise above 50 degrees Fahrenheit, asparagus will begin to sprout new shoots.

  • However, the ideal temperature range for purple passion asparagus seed production is 24-30 degrees celsius during the day and 16-22 degrees celsius at night.
  • It is common for rooted asparagus to grow three to six inches of asparagus spears per day under this optimal temperature.
  • Temperatures above 85 degrees Fahrenheit or below 55 degrees Fahrenheit will slow down the rate of root development and shoot production.
  • Hotter temperatures can also result in malformed shoots and plant discolouration or die-back will take place in temperatures near or below freezing point. 

2. Soil

An adequately draining, nutrient-rich soil is required by the asparagus. This plant is a heavy feeder, particularly when it comes to phosphorus. Before planting, thoroughly apply organic compost into your asparagus bed.

To increase the phosphorus content of your soil you can add a little amount of rock phosphate. Asparagus prefers soil with a pH range of 6.5 to 7.0. Also, you can boost soils nutrients by adding calcium and nitrogen to the soil organically.

3. Water

During the dry season when there isn’t enough rainfall, water the new asparagus crowns at planting and throughout the first growing period. Established asparagus is drought resistant and continues to grow well when rain is the only source of water.

4. Measurements (Fertilizer)

Fertilization should take place in late summer or early fall, and probably again in spring. Because of this plant’s requirements, it’s best to use a fertilizer that has a great concentration of phosphorus and potassium.

Remove the mulch and work the fertilizer further into the soil’s top, be careful not to apply the fertilizer directly on the plant or its roots. Then, try replacing the mulch surrounding the plant.

5. Space between plants:

When spacing asparagus plants, give them a space of 30 to 46 centimetres apart.

6. Companion Planting

To decrease the need for pesticides, carefully select companions. Nasturtiums, oregano, parsley, peppers, sage, and thyme can be planted alongside asparagus seeds or crowns. Tomato nematodes are repelled by asparagus, and asparagus beetles are repelled by tomatoes.

7. Diseases & Pests

Rust, crown rot, fusarium wilt, and stem rot are all potential problems for the plant. Make use of seeds that are propagated in sterile soil instead of plants purchased from stores, and planting in disease-free soil will help maintain the good health condition of the plant.

Asparagus beetles can destroy the asparagus plant’s ferns. They overwinter in the top growth, so removing the fronds thoroughly in the fall is recommended to solve the pest problem. Merely hand-pick the ravenous insects in a small garden and dispose of them.

Aphids that affect asparagus are commonly found on growing tips in groups and they can be reduced by encouraging benefits such as ladybugs.

Top Health Benefits Of Asparagus Plant

Helps To Lower The Threat Of Type 2 Diabetes

Uncontrolled inflammation and oxidative stress, like heart disease, boost the danger of type 2 diabetes As a result of its impressive anti-inflammatory attributes and large antioxidant levels, asparagus is excellent preventive food.

Anti-aging benefits

The antioxidant glutathione found in asparagus is considered to delay the ageing process. Asparagus also contains folate, which works with B12 to prevent mental impairment.

Helps To Get Rid Of Excessive Fluids From The Body And Help Prevent Kidney Stones

Asparagus can act as a natural diuretic. This can aid in the removal of residual salt and liquid from the body, making it especially beneficial for people who suffer from edema and high blood pressure. It also aids in the removal of toxins from the kidneys and the prevention of kidney stones.

faqs on stages of growing asparagus

Q1: Should You Let Asparagus Go To Seed?

No, You Should Not Allow The Plant To Go To Seed Since You Will Be Left With Only The Asparagus Leaf Bud On Your Plate.

Q2: Do Asparagus Plants Spread?          

Yes, The Asparagus Plants Do Spread As They Develop And Grow.

Q3: Does Asparagus Multiply? 

When Asparagus Plants Are Given The Best Frowning Condition (Sunny Site, Good Drainage, Proper Watering, And Adequate Nutrients) They Multiply.

Q4: Why Are My Asparagus So Thin?  

If Your Asparagus Appears Thin, Then There’s A Problem With The Root System.

Q5: What Is The Best Fertilizer For Asparagus?

The Best Fertilizer Will Contain A Balanced Formula Of Equal Concentrations Of Nitrogen, Phosphorus, And Potassium.

Q6: Is Epsom Salt Good For Asparagus?            

Yes, Epsom Salt Contains A Lot Of Sulfur Needed By The Asparagus Plant For Its Growth

Q7: How Deep Do Asparagus Roots Grow?

Asparagus Roots Can Grow8 To 10 Inches Deep Into The Soil.

Q8: What Happens If You Let Asparagus Grow?

If You Allow Your Purple Asparagus Plant To Overgrow, Beetles Will Lay Their Eggs In Its Ferns

Q9: Does Asparagus Regrow After Cutting?

Yes, Because Asparagus Is A Perennial Plant, And Perennials Grow Back Year After Year.

Conclusion

The asparagus plant is a plant that when planted well will give you up to 20 years of harvest. Educating yourself about the requirements involved in growing the asparagus plant will ensure a sustainable harvest. Follow the tips shown above to plan your asparagus plant growing.

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