Tips for Transplanting Asparagus

Transplanting asparagus is the only way to get full production in the first spring following planting, and it's the best way to rescue an overcrowded asparagus patch.



asparagus-seedling
An asparagus seedling will produce only leaves. It may come up in an established bed, or in the most unpredictable places!
PHOTO: SHARON MCALLISTER
mattock-asparagus-clump
A mattock can be used to pry up an asparagus clump by inserting the blade beneath the plant's root system.
SHARON MCALLISTER
asparagus-yearling
A yearling plant may develop a tiny spear, but it quickly opens and at that point is no longer worth harvesting.
SHARON MCALLISTER
asparagus-plant
When this clump was divided, it produced 250 plants!
SHARON MCALLISTER
washing-asparagus-plant
Washing away the dirt will help you see how to untangle individual plants from a clump.
SHARON MCALLISTER
spading-fork
A spading fork makes the transplanting procedure easier on a gardener's back.
SHARON MCALLISTER
asparagus-plant-roots
The crowns of this asparagus are spent, but it still has some healthy roots. If planted, it will produce small, new shoots, but it will be several years be fore it yields any eating-sized spears.
SHARON MCALLISTER
asparagus-crown
Each plant you move should have a healthy crown like the one shown here, if you want it to produce edible spears when spring arrives.
SHARON MCALLISTER
asparagus-roots
The young plant on the right has round, firm roots (although a few are stunted from lack of growing space), while the roots of the "mother plant" (on the left) are limp and exhausted.
SHARON MCALLISTER

















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