Yes, we are here!

At MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we have been educating folks about the benefits of self-reliance for 50 years. That includes researching and sourcing the best books and products to help individuals master the skills they need in times like these and beyond. Our online store is open and we are here to answer any questions you might have. Our customer service staff is available Monday through Friday from 8a.m.-5p.m. CDT. We can be reached at 1-800-234-3368 or by email. Stay safe!

Growing Great Asparagus

Let them leaf out! Follow these simple tips to grow the best asparagus. Ever. Leaving some spears uncut will stimulate the plants to produce more.

| May/June 2006

  • growing asparagus, aparagus plant, planting asparagus, how to grow asparagus, harvesting


  • growing asparagus, aparagus plant, planting asparagus, how to grow asparagus, harvesting


Asparagus is one of the easiest (and earliest) garden crops to grow. You only need to plant it once, then it will produce sweet, tender spears every spring for decades. To start a new bed, buy bareroot asparagus crowns at garden centers in the spring. Then try this harvesting tip to extend your fresh asparagus season by at least two weeks: instead of the traditional harvesting method — cutting all the spears when they are 6 to 8 inches long — allow two or three sturdy spears to grow uncut. Research at Cornell University found that as they leaf out, these "mother spears" will send solar energy down to the roots and stimulate the plants to produce more spears than traditionally harvested ones.

Here are three more asparagus growing tips to try:

  • If you have a dry spring, keep your asparagus bed well-watered.
  • When you have more asparagus than you can eat while it's still fresh, just blanch the spears briefly in boiling water and pop them in the freezer.
  • Stop harvesting your asparagus once all the emerging spears are thinner than a pencil. This leaves the roots enough energy to produce foliage that will capture solar energy through the summer and replenish the roots for the next season's crop.




Joe Stutzman
3/10/2007 12:00:00 AM

If seaweed is not readily accessible in your area, Neptune’s Harvest has the best fish/seaweed liquid plant food available. They use cold processing so no nutrients are lost. Here is a link for this product.

12/24/2006 12:00:00 AM

I bought aq place that I will move into in 3 years This next spring I will plant asparagus patch. The last one i did was 22 years ago. I got manure from the chicken coop dug down 30 inches covered the ground with about 6 inches of manure then sand 6 inches deep then my plants. I covered them with soil I had tilled with straw and grass clipping. I did this in March I had some small sprouts in 45 days and did not cut them. The next year I ate asparagu all year until the it frosted I did leave a small row in the middle of the patch untouched all summer long and have done so each year. My patch is 3ft wide 18 ft. wide. with raspberries on one side blackberries on the other. 4 ft from each patch Montana.

11/13/2006 12:00:00 AM

seaweed is the thing!last year i sowed asparagus seed, and pricked out the seedlings as soon as they were large enough. after lifting my first early potatoes that had been grown on seaweed i planted out the asparagus and top dressed with more seaweed. this year many of the plants had over 2 doz. shoots. i did not cut any until the severe frost warning. i thought that it would be no worse for the plants to have spears cut as to have them frosted. all the shoots were at least as thick as a fountain pen. there seemed no difference between the five varieties. i have again added seaweed, and expect to have all the asparagus that i can eat next year.

Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

50 Years of Money-Saving Tips!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS for 50 years and counting, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters

click me