How was your asparagus this spring? Were your spears succulent, juicy and plentiful? Congratulations if you said yes to all three. If not, fear not because help is here.
Growing asparagus is a rewarding, delicious and exciting endeavor. There is nothing like seeing the spears break through the ground after a long winter. A good asparagus patch will deliver new spears almost daily. Some days you might eat them all and other days you might decide to save them for a recipe that requires larger quantities.
Asparagus season is over here in the USA. Sure you may see a few spears pushing up here and there, but not in the numbers you see in spring.
Here are some tips to consider:
- Asparagus are lone soldiers. They do not like competition from other edible plants or even the smallest weeds. Your beds must be kept clear of weeds and other plants at all times. Our asparagus beds often get invaded by purslane. We love purslane, but it cannot be allowed to grow in the asparagus beds. Be sure to weed the beds often.
- Let some spears grow. I know it is tough, but the underground roots (crowns) of the asparagus need to be nourished. As you recall from high school biology, plants get much of their energy from the sun. The spears you do not harvest are like solar panels that collect energy and send it down into the rot system of the crowns. If you picked every spear you would likely not see much production in future years.
- Apply compost to give nutrients to the “crowns”. Crowns are the root systems powering the production of those wonderful and tasty spears.
If you are not growing asparagus then now is a great time to start planning for next year! Are you sold yet? If so, check out this video to see what it takes to get started.