Keep your 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          

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

P = Plant crowns

  • Easy to grow. Plant as crowns. 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 beside): Parsley, Basil, Nasturtiums, Lettuce
  • Avoid growing close to: Garlic, Onions, and root vegetables
  • Seedlings (approx 6cm/3in)

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 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

11 Oct 18, Robert Koch (New Zealand - cool/mountain climate)
In north central Indiana, USA, I usually trim them back after the first frost, and add mulch through the winter. Is there anything else I can do to enhance my crop next year? Bob Koch
12 Oct 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I have been growing for 3 years and done a bit of research. I don't have frosts. August is the end of winter here. Temps start rising from 6-10 to 12-15 by end Sept at night. Days go from 20-25 to 24-28. I cut mine 1st week of Aug and apply compost and horse manure. The manure is new but I'm going to try and decompose it before hand next year. I also apply some fertiliser once it starts to shoot spears. 3-4 teaspoons to 9l of water.
28 Aug 18, JENNIFER KELLY (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I buy my asparagus crowns from Green Harvest who are located in Queensland and sell their products, seeds and edible plants by mail order or if you live near them you can buy in person. They are an organic plant seller.
16 Aug 18, Sofoa (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi, I planted an asparagus plant last year (2017) in July. Cut back the ferns in August this year (2018) and topped with compost. There are a few spears that have come through now. What should I do with them? Should I cut them back or just leave them? Thanks
19 Aug 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Read up on the internet.
18 Aug 18, Daniel (Australia - temperate climate)
I’m in Melbourne outer east, I have 6 asparagus plants from one and two years old. Only one of the newer plants has spears coming up from about 2 weeks ago. At this stage I’m leaving them to get stronger.
20 Aug 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
From seed to a crown 1.5 to 2
22 Aug 18, Mike (Australia - arid climate)
I will try again. Plant seed - one year old - a crown 1.5 - 2 inches. Two years old a few spears - pick a few thicker than a pencil - leave the one thinner than a pencil. Three years old you have a reasonable crop.
08 Aug 18, June Dunn (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
My asparagus is now two years old and already shooting. Should I crop and eat or leave alone and also should I put manure and compost on now before spring. Thanks
10 Aug 18, (Australia - tropical climate)
They say at 2 y o leave the ones thinner than a pencil - pick the bigger ones. Put the compost manure on now. Lay off the watering from end of May early June to allow the ferns to dry back a bit. Then in August cut the ferns and put the compost on and start watering Sept.
Showing 1 - 10 of 204 comments

Ask a question or post a comment or advice 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

Put Gardenate in your pocket. Buy the app for iPhone, iPad or Android to add your own plants and record your plantings and harvests

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.
We cannot help if you are overrun by giant slugs.