It takes three years to grow asparagus from seed to harvesting.
How Long Until Asparagus Seeds Germinate?
How long it takes asparagus seeds to germinate depends on the soil temperature. At 68°F, seeds will emerge in 15 days. At cooler temperatures, it may take up to 24 days. Presoaked seeds will germinate more quickly.
The seedlings can be transplanted into the garden as soon as the soil reaches 50°F. The first year the roots will be spindly and will not be able to be harvested. Many gardeners choose to buy crowns that are one to two years old for an earlier harvest.
How Long Before I Can Harvest Asparagus?
In order to produce a healthy asparagus garden that will continue to produce for years, you need to be patient when it comes to harvesting. The plants should have at least two full growing seasons following planting before you harvest any spears. During the third year, harvesting should be very light and last about two weeks. The next year, you can begin to harvest up to four weeks. The fifth and subsequent seasons, asparagus can be harvested all spring for about eight weeks.
What Happens If I Choose to Harvest Earlier or Longer?
Harvesting asparagus plants before they have had time to establish strong and healthy crowns will result in poorer plant health and subsequently a diminished crop. The same is true if you overharvest even in a healthy bed.
“Asparagus.” – University of Illinois Cooperative Extension. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Feb. 2014. <http://urbanext.illinois.edu/veggies/asparagus.cfm>.
“ Growing Asparagus in the Home Garden HYG-1603-94” Ohio State University Extension,. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Feb. 2014. <http://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/1000/1603.html>.