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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

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.
02 Aug 15, John butler (Australia - temperate climate)
Where can I buy commercial quantity of seed in west Australia please
17 Mar 15, Pauline leister (Australia - temperate climate)
I have to leave my rental place, but my asparagus are still in full, green fern. Can I dig them up to take with me?. I don't want to leave them, nor do I want to kill them by digging them up. I only have a week before leaving. Please help. Thankyou.
26 Jan 15, bruce wheeler (Australia - temperate climate)
27 Oct 14, Genevieve (Australia - temperate climate)
Bought a punnet of purple asparagus "ferns" from Bunnings garden centre. About dozen ferns in punnet. Would appreciate some tips on how deep to plant and should I cover every few weeks with soil? Intending to grow in a raised bed measuring 90cm x 90cm x 40cm.
02 Oct 14, Victor Jeva (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi Can I grow cucumber In the same bed with asparagus? Many thanks for your feedback......
Showing 1 - 10 of 114 comments

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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.

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