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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #16
JerryHaskins
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Originally Posted by brownrexx View Post
One year my ferns were leaning over on my other plants too much so I put tall stakes in all 4 corners of the asparagus bed and ran some garden twine around the bed. That kept them more upright and off of my other plants.
Yeah, I do that every year:
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #17
PhilaGardener
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I've been told that the best tool to dig up an old bed and reset the crowns is a backhoe! I don't have one, so my 20 yr bed just putters along. Some crowns seem to be better at making thick spears than others.

It is important to clean up any red berries at the end of the year both to prevent volunteers from adding in, but also to reduce your asparagus beetle burden (the larvae overwinter in them). I had problems with them for a few years but after paying attention to this they have not been an issue.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #18
carolyn137
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We had a very large field of asparagus at the farm where I grew up that lasted for many decades,I think the Shakers might well have been the ones who planted that whole field back in the late 1880's. My father sold where it was to a developer who plowed it up,made it an extension of what was called Maple Lane.

Now I may get this not right,since I'm not looking at any links,nor doing any Googling, BUT, when the bushes with red berries went up he disced that field proto,since some bushes would have male berries and some female berries.

Is this making sense to anyone?

I still have several of those asparagus forks here where I now live,it was a back breaking task to keep bending over to cut the stalks down where they kind of met the soil. Then haul all those stalks into the barn where that asparagus buncher was.

And the seeds from those bushes would be blown around at the edge of the farm and form clumps,we called them the wild ones and many times my mother and I went around the edge and cut stalks to bring home, she said to always cut the ones in the middle of those clumps, the biggest ones,then to trim off the bottom where the white part was and cook the rest for meals.

After being bunched,a red rubber band went around each bunch,the bunches put in a shallow pan of water and my father would take them to market early the next morning.

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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #19
b54red
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Jerry the problem with growing asparagus down here is the warm winters that we frequently have and the long hot dry spells that can happen in the late summer and early fall. I had a bed for about 7 years and it was fairly productive in year 4 and 5 but then we had two very mild winters and that really messed them up so I ended up removing them at the end of the seventh year.

I have a good friend who really is crazy about asparagus and he got some crowns of a variety that does better down here in the deep south. If you want I will try to find out what they are. He is still producing a lot of great asparagus. He covers the bed with about four to six inches of compost each fall. He uses his own and fresh mushroom compost that he gets from a local nursery. He also adds most of a 50 lb bag of cottonseed meal at the same time. He has them irrigated with a drip system and fertilizes them monthly all spring and summer with TTF or Urban farms Vegetable formula. He did lose a couple of his crowns after two mild winters in a row but thankfully we had some good cold weather last year. His plants have been producing quite heavily for about 10 years now after the first three years of very limited harvesting.

Bill
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #20
JerryHaskins
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Originally Posted by b54red View Post
Jerry the problem with growing asparagus down here is the warm winters that we frequently have and the long hot dry spells that can happen in the late summer and early fall. I had a bed for about 7 years and it was fairly productive in year 4 and 5 but then we had two very mild winters and that really messed them up so I ended up removing them at the end of the seventh year.

I have a good friend who really is crazy about asparagus and he got some crowns of a variety that does better down here in the deep south. If you want I will try to find out what they are. He is still producing a lot of great asparagus. He covers the bed with about four to six inches of compost each fall. He uses his own and fresh mushroom compost that he gets from a local nursery. He also adds most of a 50 lb bag of cottonseed meal at the same time. He has them irrigated with a drip system and fertilizes them monthly all spring and summer with TTF or Urban farms Vegetable formula. He did lose a couple of his crowns after two mild winters in a row but thankfully we had some good cold weather last year. His plants have been producing quite heavily for about 10 years now after the first three years of very limited harvesting.

Bill
Thanks for the offer and info. I LOVE fresh asparagus, but it may be too hard to do in my limited space and Zone 8 heat.

I plan to try adding compost this fall/winter and see if that helps.

I probably should fertilize mine more, too.

Take care.
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