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Asparagus

STORING ASPARAGUS PLANTS PRIOR TO PLANTING
Asparagus roots received before planting time should be kept in moist sand, or wrapped in damp newspapers, and stored in a cool cellar. Wipe off any storage mold.

SITE
Locate on a well-drained site which receives full sun for the entire day. Partial shade will produce lanky plants.

SOIL
Rich well-drained with well rotted compost or manure. 5-10-5 complete fertilizer every 10 feet (rate 1/2 lb.). Fertilize after harvest and mid August.

ASPARAGUS PLANTING

Dig a trench 12 inches deep. Refill trench to within 6-8 inches of the top with amended soil. Set asparagus roots, spreading them out evenly, on the amended soil in trench. Cover will 2-3 inches of soil. As the shoots grow add amended soil, staying even with their growth, till the trench is filled in even with ground level. Rows should be 15-18 inches apart.

MULCH AND MISCELLANEOUS
Mulch around asparagus to control weeds and conserve moisture. Remove yellowed fernlike foliage in fall and spring.

ASPARAGUS HARVESTING
When asparagus are 2-3 years from planting, you can harvest 8 inch high and 1/2 inch thick shoots. Harvesting can continue for 4 weeks after initial harvest, from mid-spring until early July. Properly selected shoots should snap off at the soil line.

WINTER PREPARATION
In cool climates mulch with evergreen branches, or straw, over asparagus crowns during the winter months. Remove this winter protection mulch in early spring.

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Read the next Article: All About Radishes

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Gardening Tip of the Day

  • Old garden hoses can easily be converted into an irrigation system. As long as the female connection is intact, (garden centers sell replacements) the remainder can be used for trickle irrigation. Using an awl or small diameter drill of 1/16-inch diameter or less, poke or drill holes six to 12 inches apart along the hose. Tightly fold and wrap the other end and any large holes with duck tape.