I should know better than to buy plant material from Lowe’s… But it was only $20 for a bunch of Mary Washington asparagus roots. The kind that comes in a box large enough to put some pretty graphics on it so suckers like me buys them.
Their forever home is not ready. I figure I start by demummifying them in some wet coconut coir so they are not a brittle mess? I plan on finding some time this weekend to dig their trench.
I must say looking at videos of people planting roots these are garbage. Tiny, dry to the point of brittleness. I’m probably going to start them in pots first to see if they actually make it.
When I planted mine I had a few extras that didn’t fit in the area I had prepared, so I made large newspaper pots for them (rolling newspaper around a well-tapered nursery pot, then folding up the bottom). They grew well and I later gave them to a neighbor when I was sure all the crowns I planted were coming up and I didn’t need the extras. He just planted the paper pots directly in the soil without having to disturb the roots.
I actually took all my asparagus out two years after planting. I only had a 10 crown row and I realized the amount of asparagus I would get wasn’t worth dedicating all that space to them when I could put in things that would produce a lot more for me. I’m on a small surburban lot so everything is a tough choice when it comes to space. I was amazed at how much the crowns had grown and how hard it was to get all of them out of the ground!
By the way, if you haven’t already planted them and it isn’t too late to return them, you might consider getting some online since I see a few vendors still have them. They’ll probably be in better shape.
I think all of the things that come in dormant in those boxes to the big box stores are usually in sad shape. They spend way too long at room temperatures and are often dried out if not completely dead.
Good luck! They are fun to grow if you have the space and there is nothing like snapping off that first spear to come up in the spring and eating it raw standing right there in the garden.
Yes when buying dormant plants from big box stores you have to purchase within the first couple weeks of arrival.
Unless you own a large plot of land they are generally not worth it. You need 12 crowns to feet one person and each crown takes up at least one foot. Pots will not be economical for asparagus because you will need at least 12 big pots to feed yourself.
Probably not worth the effort, in that case. Asparagus crowns are tough little nutters, but that dry pretty much means the active root cells are mostly dead, not dormant.
Pots do fine in such cases…I’ve bought some after markdown at mid summer and potted them. May not thrive, but live is the goal.
I have an ideal spot for them. The ground by my Romeo and Juliet cherry bushes slopes on the south side then there is the fence. Right along the fence I would not want to put something that grows too tall or something that required access from both sides. The outside of the fence is a steep slope.
I’ve bought them like that before because they were basically giving them away for a couple dollars. I didn’t have time to plant them correctly and ended up throwing them in a old tractor tire that I used to have a blueberry Bush planted in. I just covered them up with a couple inches of soil and forgot about them. They grew like crazy and I am finally going to dig them up and plant them correctly in my garden area. Hopefully they still grow as well after they are moved
I had great luck starting them from seed. I planted them last year and took a light harvest off them this year. Now I’m letting them grow out for the rest of the year. Next year I will harvest them heavy.
I’ve planted so much asparagus over the years. I think the gophers got it all in the end. I’m done trying.
I planted 'Gus that I got from Nourse Farms several years ago. The roots were nice and big and they all turned out.
I would say that if I had it to do over again I’d be more selective on the site location I chose.
The ground is fine, but at the North end of the row are a couple peach trees, and to the South my CJ bush cherries and my ER cherry tree.
I have to be mindful of whatever I’m spraying on those two fruits, often having to cover the 'Gus with a tarp depending on wind and product.
It’s doable, just a pain sometimes.