Keep your kitchen garden growing - see what to plant right now

Growing Asparagus

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
              P P P P  

(Best months for growing Asparagus in Australia - temperate regions)

P = Plant in the garden.

August: frost tender

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden, or plant as crowns. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 16°C and 30°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 20 - 40 cm apart
  • Harvest in 2-3 years. Plant 'crowns' to harvest earlier .
  • Compatible with (can grow in same bed): Parsley, Basil, Nasturtiums, Lettuce
  • Avoid growing in same bed: Garlic, Onions
  • Seedlings (approx 6cm/3in)
    Seedlings (approx 6cm/3in)

Seeds will take 2-3 years before maturing into crowns. Plant crowns (roots) 20-40cm apart and a few cm (1 inch) deep in well manured soil. The asparagus shoots grow in spring. Harvest the shoots which are bigger than 1-2cm/half-inch in diameter. Leave the rest to grow into the leafy ferns (1.5m/5-6ft tall) which will feed the crowns to give a crop next year. In autumn the ferns will be covered in bright red poisonous berries. Leave the ferns to die down in autumn, then trim off the dead stalks and pile on plenty of rotted manure/compost to give the roots plenty of food to produce new stems in spring.

Harvest by cutting off the stalk, close to the ground. From the second or third year you can get an additional crop by letting the first lot of ferns grow, then bending down the stalks to break them. A second crop of shoots will grow and can be harvested. Leave subsequent shoots to grow on to ferns. Asparagus does not like continuously wet and warm soil. It grows better where there is a cool or frosty season.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Asparagus

Steaming is traditional, then coating with melted butter or hollandaise sauce.
Alternatively break in short lengths, and cook quickly in hot oil in a wok and sprinkle with soy sauce or balsamic vinegar.

NOTE: The asparagus berries are poisonous. Only the young shoots are edible.

Your comments and tips

14 May 16, Anne (Australia - temperate climate)
I was given some asparagus ferns by our neighbour some months ago and want to plant them in the garden. They are about 8 inches tall. Can i plant them now? What are the soil requirements?
14 Apr 16, ruth brillantes (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi, I live in Melbourne and I want plant asparagus. Where can I buy seedlings or crowns and when is the best time/ month to plant. Thanks, Ruth
13 May 16, Gaz (Australia - arid climate)
I bought some from 'Bunnings' June last year, hoping to do the same again this year if they have it...cheers.
23 Feb 16, Sav (Australia - temperate climate)
Bought a punnet of Asparagus ferns a year ago and transplanted them in the ground but did not space them enough. They are still a few inches tall. When is the best time time to dig them out to re-plant? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
01 Mar 16, Genevieve (Australia - temperate climate)
Live in Sydney, like you bought a punnet and transfered to a larger pot for few months. Transfered them in mid autumn with lots of manure. They have been madly throwing ferns, once ferns die down, will re=manure and top dress with cow poo dressing as well. Hope this helps.
26 Nov 15, (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi I have 2 year old crowns of asparagus which were planted in late August, my question is how long is the harvest season in the Berkley Vale area. And how do you know when the last spears arrive. As I need them as a fern. I would hate to cut them off. I am new at this I need advise. We have 30 crowns.
08 Nov 15, noni (Australia - temperate climate)
when growing white asparagus, how are the beds watered and when. When finished are the plastic covers removed to allow the plants to recouparate and then re covered when ready to pick once more.
28 Oct 15, (Australia - temperate climate)
I have lots of fern and no asparagus after a couple of years. Is there a chance it's the wrong sex? How do I tell if I will get fruit here in a sub-tropical garden?
18 Oct 15, gwyneth (Australia - temperate climate)
my asparagus has been in for 3 years. this year I am getting plenty but they are pencil thin. should I feed them.
24 Oct 15, (Australia - temperate climate)
Yes, add manure to the bed when the weather warms up at the beginning of spring each year.
Showing 1 - 10 of 119 comments

Post a question, comment or tip about Asparagus

Please provide your email address if you are hoping for a reply

All comments are reviewed before displaying on the site, so your posting will not appear immediately

Gardenate App

Buy the app for iPhone/iPod, iPad or Android and support the Gardenate website!

Planting reminders

Join 30,000+ gardeners who rely on Gardenate. Subscribe to our free planting reminders email newsletter

Home | Vegetables and herbs to plant | Climate zones | About Gardenate | Contact us | Privacy Policy

This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.

Hutchinson Software Pty Ltd, Armidale, NSW, Australia