Asparagus is one of those garden veggies that can feel intimidating to grow. However, it’s relatively easy to start your asparagus patch—plus, it’s a fantastic addition to your garden and can easily be stored for later use. So, how many asparagus plants should you plant for your family of four?
You should plant 40-80 asparagus plants for a family of four. This number is highly dependent on how much asparagus your family plans on consuming and the space you have available for growing. Asparagus are perennials and can take about three years to become harvestable.
In the rest of this article, I will discuss a few critical questions about growing asparagus plants, how to plant your own asparagus patch, and tips for growing more asparagus. If you want to learn more about planting asparagus for a family of four, let’s get started.
How Much Will One Asparagus Plant Yield?
Asparagus grows back each year, which is one of the many reasons they are so popular to grow. But what should you expect from each of your asparagus plants? How many spears will one asparagus plant grow?
One asparagus plant will yield 10-20 spears over several weeks. Asparagus generally grows in the spring and fall. During those seasons, you will be able to harvest the spears that shoot up from the soil, provided the plant has had time to establish itself.
It takes 2-3 years for an asparagus plant to mature and start producing harvestable spears regularly. This may feel like a long time to wait for your food, but I can promise you it’s worth the patience. Homegrown asparagus is much sweeter and less stringy than store-bought. Plus, it can easily be frozen, bottled, or pickled for later use.
How Many Times Can You Harvest Asparagus in a Year?
Now that you know how many asparagus spears you should expect, you are probably wondering about how frequently you will need to harvest them.
You can harvest asparagus every 1-2 days as the spears grow throughout the year. Asparagus spears typically sprout up and can be harvested during the months of March-June. However, asparagus spears may grow into the summer months in milder climates.
You may also be able to extend your asparagus growing season if you place them in a greenhouse. Just be sure that your greenhouse receives adequate sun throughout the day and that the temperature inside doesn’t get too hot.
How Long Does It Take Asparagus To Grow?
Planting asparagus is undoubtedly a waiting game, which intimidates many people. However, today’s world is full of instant gratification—as a result, waiting for your food to grow can feel like an eternity. So, just how long will you have to wait before your asparagus grows and begins steadily producing spears?
It takes asparagus 2-3 years to grow and become established enough to harvest their spears. However, asparagus are perennials, and by year three, your plants should be regularly producing spears during the growing season that takes place in March-June.
Though asparagus takes a long time to become established, it’s still a very worthwhile crop to add to your garden. Its relatively low maintenance, nutrient-dense, and fresh asparagus taste terrific even when consumed raw.
How To Start an Asparagus Patch
Next, I will go over how you can start your own asparagus patch. The overall process is quite simple, and the most challenging part is waiting 2-3 years for your delicious plants to fully mature.
What You Will Need
Before starting your asparagus patch, you should prepare the following:
- Asparagus crowns
- A shovel
- Miracle-Gro Potting soil
How To Grow Asparagus
Once you have everything you need, simply follow these steps:
- Clear all weeds. Ensure that you remove any weeds or other plants from the area you wish to grow your asparagus patch in. This will help your asparagus establish itself better, as it will not have to fight weeds for nutrients and space to grow.
- Dig a small trench. The trench should be 6-8 inches (15-20 cm) deep. Make sure that you make the ditch wide enough to evenly space your asparagus, approximately 12 inches (30 cm) wide. Asparagus needs about 18 inches (46 cm) of space around each crown that is planted.
- Place your asparagus roots into the trench. Use some soil to build a small mound for your asparagus roots to sit on before covering them in the dirt. This will help the crown to stay upright as it begins to grow.
- Cover the roots with 2 inches (5 cm) of soil. As asparagus begins to grow, more soil will be added to the trench. This ensures that your plant will grow more easily since it doesn’t have as far to grow before breaking the surface.
- Saturate the asparagus with water. Make sure that you water the asparagus thoroughly and often as it begins to grow. Just be sure that your asparagus patch has good drainage. This will help you avoid issues like root rot.
- Add 2 inches (5 cm) of soil every two weeks until the soil is level. You will need to fill in the trench slowly until all the soil is filled back into the hole. Once you have completed this step, it’s time to wait for your plants to grow.
As I previously stated, growing asparagus is pretty easy. You will simply need to be patient and remember to water your new asparagus patch regularly in the meantime.
If you are more of a visual learner and would like to know more about planting new asparagus plants, you should check out The Gardening Channel With James Prigioni. He does a fantastic job of walking you through the planting process.
Tips for Growing More Asparagus
Finally, I would like to go over a few tips for growing bigger and healthier asparagus plants so that you can get the most out of your spear harvests. If you’re hoping to feed a family of four, you’ll want to harvest the most abundant crops possible.
Tips for growing more of the best asparagus:
- Grow your asparagus somewhere sunny. Asparagus need 6-8 hours of sunlight in order to grow and thrive. The more sun, the better, provided the climate where you live doesn’t experience sweltering temperatures.
- Check that your soil has a pH above 6. Having the correct pH in your asparagus soil helps ensure that they are better able to absorb much-needed nutrients from the dirt.
- Ensure that your soil is nutrient-rich. You can add your own compost mix or purchase some fertilized soil at your local plant store or online.
- Make sure your asparagus soil drains well. You can accomplish this by adding sand to your soil or digging down and placing rocks along the bottom of the bed. Choosing loose soil will also allow for better drainage.
Asparagus are indeed laid-back plants; so long as they get adequate sun and water, they should grow quite well. Just be sure that water never pounds in your asparagus patch, as this can quickly kill your plants.
Frequently Asked Questions
Now I’d like to briefly address some of the most common questions surrounding planting and growing asparagus.
What Month Should You Plant Asparagus?
You should plant asparagus in early March. Asparagus is easier to grow if you acquire them as roots (crowns) and plant them directly into the soil rather than sowing them yourself. Once planted, it will take 2-3 years for your plants to start producing spears for harvesting.
How Long Do Asparagus Plants Last?
Asparagus plants can last 10-30 years, depending on the care they receive. Asparagus are perennial plants, which means they will sprout back up each year so long as they are receiving the proper nutrients, sunlight, and water. How long they live can also vary based on the variety of asparagus.
Is Asparagus Easy To Grow?
Asparagus is easy to grow. Unfortunately, growing asparagus takes patience since it takes 2-3 years for an asparagus plant to produce harvestable spears. However, the planting and growing process are relatively simple since asparagus is a hardy vegetable.
If you are looking to grow enough asparagus for a family of four, it’s recommended that you grow 40-80 plants.
If you are a family that greatly enjoys asparagus at every meal, you should lean towards planting more crowns. If you don’t plan to enjoy the vegetable as often, 40 plants will probably be best. Ultimately, you will have to decide how much asparagus fits your family’s needs.