Asparagus

If you are going to grow your own Asparagus you need to know itís a long term crop. The first two years you wonít get many spears; itís not until year three that you will get a bountiful crop. Asparagus when established in beds, can last at least 20 years or more.

How to plant


In a sunny permanent position, make sure all couch, grass, roots, oxalis, etc are completely removed. The bed should be raised 10-12cm above the surrounding garden to ensure good drainage. If available, work into the ground compost, chicken manure or a good dressing of blood and bone fertilizer.

To plant the crowns, open up a 15cm wide trench 7-8cm deep and place crowns 45cm apart with roots spread out star fashion. If rows are spaced too close together, spear size may be reduced. The soil should then be replaced covering the crowns, 6-8cm deep. As the ferns emerge and grow, gradually fill in the furrow through the summer. (This need only be done in first year when planting new crowns).


If planting more than one row then  rows should be 60-80cm apart.


In the first year cut spears for 2 weeks only, then allow the plants to go to fern.  In subsequent years stop harvesting in early December and allow the plant to go to fern.

Come Autumn, remove all fern growth when it has completely yellowed off.


 
Maintenance

Apply bulb food in early Autumn, about 60gms per square metre, and early spring a boost of Sulphate of Ammonia - 60g per sq


Varieties


Jersey Giant: An outstanding variety producing giant, juicy, tender stems. Gives easily 3-4 times more production than other varieties.


Pacific Purple: Due in September 2016 (orders taken now)