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Garden Asparagus

Asparagus officinalis

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Asparagaceae (Asparagus)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
150 centimetres tall
Gardens, grassland, heathland, riversides, sand dunes, scrub, seaside, wasteland.

Green, 6 petals
Bell-shaped, pale green or yellowish flowers. Pollinated by bees.
A small, red berry, up to 1cm across. The seeds ripen in September and October.
A perennial herb with an erect, single stem. The shoots are sometimes known as 'spears'.
Other Names:
Asparagus, Asperging Herb, Common Asparagus, Edible Asparagus, Sparrow Grass, Wild Asparagus.
Frequency (UK):
Occasionally seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Asparagus officinalis, also known as garden asparagus or edible asparagus, is a perennial plant that is native to Europe and Asia. It belongs to the lily family and is known for its small, white flowers and edible, green stems. Asparagus officinalis is a tall plant that can reach heights of up to 6 feet (2 meters) and is often used for food production. It is easy to grow and is tolerant of a wide range of soil types and climates. Asparagus officinalis prefers full sun and is drought-tolerant once established. The plant is generally hardy and low maintenance, but it can be prone to pests such as asparagus beetles and cutworms. Asparagus officinalis is also known for its medicinal properties and has been used traditionally to treat a variety of ailments. However, more research is needed to fully understand its effects and to determine the safety and effectiveness of using it medicinally.


Garden asparagus, also known as Asparagus officinalis, is a perennial vegetable that is known for its delicate flavor and unique texture. It is a versatile vegetable that can be prepared in a variety of ways, from steaming to grilling to sautéing.

One of the best things about asparagus is that it is extremely easy to grow in your own garden. It is a hardy plant that can tolerate a wide range of soil conditions and temperatures, making it a great choice for both novice and experienced gardeners.

When planting asparagus, it is important to choose a location that has well-drained soil and receives plenty of sunlight. The plants should be spaced about 18-24 inches apart and planted about 1-2 inches deep. It's also important to note that Asparagus is a long-term crop, taking about 2-3 years to mature before you can harvest them, but once established, it can continue producing for decades.

As the asparagus grows, it will produce tall fern-like foliage that can reach up to 6 feet in height. These foliage are an important part of the plant's lifecycle, as they help to photosynthesize and produce energy for the following year's crop.

When it comes to harvesting asparagus, it is best to wait until the plants have been established for at least two years. During the first year, you should not harvest any spears at all, allowing the plant to focus on building up its energy reserves. In the second year, you can harvest a few spears here and there, but it is best to wait until the third year to harvest a full crop.

When the asparagus is ready to harvest, you can cut or snap off the spears at the base, being careful not to damage the crown or the roots. The spears should be firm and straight, and ideally, no thicker than a pencil.

Asparagus can be enjoyed in a variety of ways, from steamed and served with butter or lemon to grilled with a sprinkle of olive oil and seasoning. It can also be used in soups, casseroles, and pasta dishes.

In addition to being delicious and easy to grow, asparagus also offers a host of health benefits. It is low in calories and high in nutrients, making it a great choice for those looking to maintain a healthy diet.

Asparagus is an excellent source of vitamin K, which is important for maintaining strong bones and preventing blood clots. It is also a good source of vitamin C, which helps to boost the immune system and promote healthy skin. Additionally, asparagus is a good source of folate, which is important for cell growth and development, and potassium, which helps to regulate blood pressure.

Asparagus also contains antioxidants, which help to protect the body against harmful free radicals. These antioxidants have been linked to a reduced risk of cancer and other chronic diseases.

Another benefit of growing your own asparagus is that it is a sustainable crop. Asparagus is a perennial crop, meaning it comes back year after year without the need for replanting. This not only reduces the cost of growing it but also helps to reduce the environmental impact of farming.

Overall, asparagus is a great addition to any home garden. Not only is it easy to grow and delicious to eat, but it also offers a host of health benefits and is a sustainable crop. So, consider adding some asparagus to your garden and enjoy the taste of fresh, homegrown asparagus this season!

Another great aspect of growing your own asparagus is the ability to experiment with different varieties. There are many different varieties of asparagus that vary in color, flavor and texture. The most common variety is the traditional green asparagus, but there are also purple and white varieties available.

Purple asparagus is a unique variety that is known for its vibrant purple color and nutty flavor. It is also higher in antioxidants than green asparagus and has a slightly sweeter taste. White asparagus is another interesting variety that is grown underground to prevent it from turning green. It has a delicate, sweet and nutty flavor and is considered a delicacy in some countries.

When growing your own asparagus, it is also important to be mindful of common pests and diseases that can affect the plants. Asparagus beetles and asparagus rust are the two most common issues that gardeners may face. Asparagus beetles can be controlled by handpicking them off the plants and destroying any egg masses. Asparagus rust can be controlled by removing and destroying any infected plant parts and applying a fungicide.

It's also important to note that Asparagus is a dioecious plant, meaning that it has separate male and female plants. The male plants tend to be more vigorous and produce more spears, but it's recommended to grow a mix of both to ensure proper pollination.

In conclusion, growing your own asparagus is a great way to enjoy fresh, delicious and nutritious vegetables straight from your garden. With a little bit of patience, care and attention, you can easily grow your own asparagus and enjoy the unique taste and texture of different varieties. And by growing your own you can also reduce the environmental impact of farming and have the opportunity to experiment with different varieties.


Garden Asparagus at Formby, Lancashire on the 25th September 2022.


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