The Q&A Archives: Planting asparagus

Question: What are the procedures for planting asparagus? How? When? What variety for this region? Quanity of roots for table use? Allen E.Miller Wheeling,WV

Answer: Plant purchased asparagus roots, or crowns in the spring. To prepare the bed, first choose a spot with good drainage and plenty of sun. Dig trenches about 15 inches deep and 4 or 5 feet apart. Add a layer of well-rotted manure or compost 4 or 5 inchesdeep in the bottom of the ditch. You can also add some bone meal -- a good source of phosphorus to encourage root growth. Add back some of the soil you removed, mixing it in with the compost/bonemeal. Form a little mound along the length of the trench. Set out the crowns on the top of this mound, spreading the roots carefully and spacing about 2 feet apart. Bury the roots with about 6 inches of soil, packing it gently around the crowns. Gently water the newly-planted crowns. As the shoots emerge,keep adding more soil around them, until the trenches are filled to ground level. Ten plants per person should give you plenty of asparagus.

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