Cutting Asparagus Foliage - Knowledgebase Question

Fairview, TN
Avatar for cncholland1
Question by cncholland1
August 16, 2000
This spring we planted an asparagus bed and it's doing fantastic! All the plants we put in came up, and there are dozens of shoots and a lot of foliage on each. In reading about asparagus in the Q&A library, I noticed there were two different responses to my question: what do I do with the foliage this fall? One response says to cut it back to two feet, and another response said to just bend it over into the ground. Which is correct?

Answer from NGA
August 16, 2000
Once frost has killed back the foliage, you may leave it alone until spring or trim it off and remove it. Many gardeners will remove it from the garden to avoid harboring pests and diseases over the winter. On the other hand, the old stems will add a bit of insulating mulch to the beds, and that's why some gardeners might opt to leave healthy ones in place until spring. In spring, you would remove all the old stems.

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