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General Information

Plant Care Instructions By Steve Brigham

Asparagus are easy to grow in Southern California. Although it\'s best to wait until the plants\' third spring to start harvesting, your plants will continue to produce heavily each spring for 10-15 years after that. Good soil preparation before planting is essential, but little maintenance is necessary. If you grow an \"all male\" variety such as \'UC 157\', \'Jersey Giant\', or \'Jersey Knight\', you\'ll avoid unwanted volunteer seedlings which may differ in quality from the original plants.

Is Indoor Plant?

No

These month by month plant care tasks are for plants in the following zones :
Sunset Zones : 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
USDA Zones :
Web Link - For more information

Plant Care Instruction

  • Scroll down or click on any month for plant care instructions
    • January
    • February
    • March
    • April
    • May
    • June
    • July
    • August
    • September
    • October
    • November
    • December
    January
    1. Buy

    Buy big, healthy bare-root plants as available.
    2. Plant

    Plant fresh roots 12\" apart in rich, well-drained soil in full sun or a little shade (good drainage is a must -- in poorly-drained soils, plant in raised beds). Dig trenches 12\" wide and 8-10\" deep, and mix in a generous amount of composted manure or other soil amendment plus some 5-10-10 fertilizer in the bottom of the trench. Plant roots so that the tops are 6-8\" below the top of the trench, and cover with 2\" of soil. As new plants grow, gradually fill in trench, but do not cover the new growing tips.
    3. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    4. Propagate

    Propagate by division of established root clumps.
    February
    1. Buy

    Buy big, healthy bare-root plants as available.
    2. Plant

    Plant fresh roots 12\" apart in rich, well-drained soil in full sun or a little shade (good drainage is a must -- in poorly-drained soils, plant in raised beds). Dig trenches 12\" wide and 8-10\" deep, and mix in a generous amount of composted manure or other soil amendment plus some 5-10-10 fertilizer in the bottom of the trench. Plant roots so that the tops are 6-8\" below the top of the trench, and cover with 2\" of soil. As new plants grow, gradually fill in trench, but do not cover the new growing tips.
    3. Fertilize

    Fertilize with a 5-10-10 plant food.
    4. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    5. Propagate

    Propagate by division of established root clumps.
    March
    1. Sow Seeds

    Asparagus may be grown from seed, but it will take a year longer to harvest as compared to bare-root plants. Sow seed directly in prepared beds or sow into pots and plant the young plants in the fall.
    2. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    3. Mulch

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.
    4. Harvest

    Harvest new spears when they are 5\" tall. For \"white asparagus\", cover new shoots with soil as they grow to protect them from the sun.
    April
    1. Sow Seeds

    Asparagus may be grown from seed, but it will take a year longer to harvest as compared to bare-root plants. Sow seed directly in prepared beds or sow into pots and plant the young plants in the fall.
    2. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    3. Mulch

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.
    4. Harvest

    Harvest new spears when they are 5\" tall. For \"white asparagus\", cover new shoots with soil as they grow to protect them from the sun.
    May
    1. Sow Seeds

    Asparagus may be grown from seed, but it will take a year longer to harvest as compared to bare-root plants. Sow seed directly in prepared beds or sow into pots and plant the young plants in the fall.
    2. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    3. Mulch

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.
    4. Harvest

    Harvest new spears when they are 5\" tall. For \"white asparagus\", cover new shoots with soil as they grow to protect them from the sun.
    June
    1. Fertilize

    Fertilize with a 5-10-10 plant food.
    2. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    3. Mulch

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.
    July
    1. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    2. Mulch

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.
    August
    1. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    2. Prune

    For a fall crop of asparagus, don\'t harvest in the spring, but let the foliage grow -- then cut back to 2\" from the ground in August.
    3. Mulch

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.
    September
    1. Fertilize

    Fertilize with a 5-10-10 plant food.
    2. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    3. Mulch

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.
    October
    1. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    2. Mulch

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.
    3. Harvest

    Harvest a fall crop from plants you didn\'t cut from in the spring and then cut back in August.
    November
    1. Buy

    Buy big, healthy bare-root plants as available.
    2. Plant

    Plant fresh roots 12\" apart in rich, well-drained soil in full sun or a little shade (good drainage is a must -- in poorly-drained soils, plant in raised beds). Dig trenches 12\" wide and 8-10\" deep, and mix in a generous amount of composted manure or other soil amendment plus some 5-10-10 fertilizer in the bottom of the trench. Plant roots so that the tops are 6-8\" below the top of the trench, and cover with 2\" of soil. As new plants grow, gradually fill in trench, but do not cover the new growing tips.
    3. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    4. Prune

    Cut back foliage to 2\" above the ground when it turns brown to prevent unwanted seed formation.
    5. Propagate

    Propagate by division of established root clumps.
    6. Harvest

    Harvest a fall crop from plants you didn\'t cut from in the spring and then cut back in August.
    December
    1. Buy

    Buy big, healthy bare-root plants as available.
    2. Plant

    Plant fresh roots 12\" apart in rich, well-drained soil in full sun or a little shade (good drainage is a must -- in poorly-drained soils, plant in raised beds). Dig trenches 12\" wide and 8-10\" deep, and mix in a generous amount of composted manure or other soil amendment plus some 5-10-10 fertilizer in the bottom of the trench. Plant roots so that the tops are 6-8\" below the top of the trench, and cover with 2\" of soil. As new plants grow, gradually fill in trench, but do not cover the new growing tips.
    3. Water

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.
    4. Prune

    Cut back foliage to 2\" above the ground when it turns brown to prevent unwanted seed formation.
    5. Propagate

    Propagate by division of established root clumps.
  • Buy

    When's the best time to buy this plant? When can you buy these from seed (if you can)? When is it usually available? What are things to look for when you're buying it? Or anything other tidbit of information you can share!

    January

    Buy big, healthy bare-root plants as available.

    February

    Buy big, healthy bare-root plants as available.

    November

    Buy big, healthy bare-root plants as available.

    December

    Buy big, healthy bare-root plants as available.

    Plant

    When's a good time to plant this plant or bulb? Any special planting instructions?

    January

    Plant fresh roots 12\" apart in rich, well-drained soil in full sun or a little shade (good drainage is a must -- in poorly-drained soils, plant in raised beds). Dig trenches 12\" wide and 8-10\" deep, and mix in a generous amount of composted manure or other soil amendment plus some 5-10-10 fertilizer in the bottom of the trench. Plant roots so that the tops are 6-8\" below the top of the trench, and cover with 2\" of soil. As new plants grow, gradually fill in trench, but do not cover the new growing tips.

    February

    Plant fresh roots 12\" apart in rich, well-drained soil in full sun or a little shade (good drainage is a must -- in poorly-drained soils, plant in raised beds). Dig trenches 12\" wide and 8-10\" deep, and mix in a generous amount of composted manure or other soil amendment plus some 5-10-10 fertilizer in the bottom of the trench. Plant roots so that the tops are 6-8\" below the top of the trench, and cover with 2\" of soil. As new plants grow, gradually fill in trench, but do not cover the new growing tips.

    November

    Plant fresh roots 12\" apart in rich, well-drained soil in full sun or a little shade (good drainage is a must -- in poorly-drained soils, plant in raised beds). Dig trenches 12\" wide and 8-10\" deep, and mix in a generous amount of composted manure or other soil amendment plus some 5-10-10 fertilizer in the bottom of the trench. Plant roots so that the tops are 6-8\" below the top of the trench, and cover with 2\" of soil. As new plants grow, gradually fill in trench, but do not cover the new growing tips.

    December

    Plant fresh roots 12\" apart in rich, well-drained soil in full sun or a little shade (good drainage is a must -- in poorly-drained soils, plant in raised beds). Dig trenches 12\" wide and 8-10\" deep, and mix in a generous amount of composted manure or other soil amendment plus some 5-10-10 fertilizer in the bottom of the trench. Plant roots so that the tops are 6-8\" below the top of the trench, and cover with 2\" of soil. As new plants grow, gradually fill in trench, but do not cover the new growing tips.

    Sow Seeds

    When can you plant these seeds? When's the best time? Can you start them indoors and move them out? Do they have any special requirements?

    March

    Asparagus may be grown from seed, but it will take a year longer to harvest as compared to bare-root plants. Sow seed directly in prepared beds or sow into pots and plant the young plants in the fall.

    April

    Asparagus may be grown from seed, but it will take a year longer to harvest as compared to bare-root plants. Sow seed directly in prepared beds or sow into pots and plant the young plants in the fall.

    May

    Asparagus may be grown from seed, but it will take a year longer to harvest as compared to bare-root plants. Sow seed directly in prepared beds or sow into pots and plant the young plants in the fall.

    Fertilize

    When should you fertilize this plant? Which kind of fertilizer do you recommend? Should you use different fertilizers at different times of year?

    February

    Fertilize with a 5-10-10 plant food.

    March

    Fertilize with a 5-10-10 plant food.

    June

    Fertilize with a 5-10-10 plant food.

    September

    Fertilize with a 5-10-10 plant food.

    Water

    Is there a time to reduce or increase watering? Any special requirements? Things to avoid during certain times of the year?

    January

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    February

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    March

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    April

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    May

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    June

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    July

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    August

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    September

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    October

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    November

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    December

    Water regularly and deeply during dry periods.

    Prune

    When's a good time to prune this plant? How about deadheading, pinching back, trimming or any other grooming? Any special requirements?

    August

    For a fall crop of asparagus, don\'t harvest in the spring, but let the foliage grow -- then cut back to 2\" from the ground in August.

    October

    Cut back foliage to 2\" above the ground when it turns brown to prevent unwanted seed formation.

    November

    Cut back foliage to 2\" above the ground when it turns brown to prevent unwanted seed formation.

    December

    Cut back foliage to 2\" above the ground when it turns brown to prevent unwanted seed formation.

    Mulch

    Does this plant need to be mulched? Are there specific types of Mulch which are better for this plant? How much?

    March

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.

    April

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.

    May

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.

    June

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.

    July

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.

    August

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.

    September

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.

    October

    Maintain a good mulch around plants to keep roots cool and conserve water use.

    Propagate

    When's a good time to divide, take cuttings, layer or propagate this plant. Any special requirements?

    January

    Propagate by division of established root clumps.

    February

    Propagate by division of established root clumps.

    November

    Propagate by division of established root clumps.

    December

    Propagate by division of established root clumps.

    Harvest

    When's a good time to harvest this plant? What's the best way to harvest? Are there special requirements or features?

    March

    Harvest new spears when they are 5\" tall. For \"white asparagus\", cover new shoots with soil as they grow to protect them from the sun.

    April

    Harvest new spears when they are 5\" tall. For \"white asparagus\", cover new shoots with soil as they grow to protect them from the sun.

    May

    Harvest new spears when they are 5\" tall. For \"white asparagus\", cover new shoots with soil as they grow to protect them from the sun.

    October

    Harvest a fall crop from plants you didn\'t cut from in the spring and then cut back in August.

    November

    Harvest a fall crop from plants you didn\'t cut from in the spring and then cut back in August.

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