ANSWER: Asparagus should be planted after the threat of frost has passed and the soil has reached at least 50°F.
What Happens If I Plant Too Early?
Don’t be in a rush to plant your asparagus crowns too early. There is no advantage, as they won’t begin to grow until the soil has warmed and dried. Planting properly will result in many years of asparagus production. Planting early when the soil is wet and cold will make the plants susceptible to diseases such as Fusarium crown rot.
Can I Start the Seeds Indoors?
Most home gardeners who grow asparagus purchase one-year old crowns to plant. Crowns are the root system of the asparagus plant. Growing from seed can be accomplished but is time consuming and will not be able to be planted into the garden until the crown has reached one-year old, which will result in the loss of spear production the first year.
Growing Asparagus Takes Time
Asparagus should not be harvested in the first and second years. To maintain a well-established garden it is important not to harvest any asparagus during the first two seasons.
“Answers to Frequently Asked Asparagus Questions .” Iowa State University Horticulture and Home Pest News. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Feb. 2014. <http://www.ipm.iastate.edu/ipm/hortnews/2004/3-26-2004/asparagusfaq.html>.
“Asparagus – An Early Spring Treat.” West Virginia University Extension Service. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Feb. 2014. <http://www.wvu.edu/~agexten/hortcult/homegard/spgasparg.htm>.
“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>.