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Keyword Search Results for:
Asparagus

13 Found

Question: 178-5201
What is the best way to transplant asparagus? Virginia, Sheffield, IL

Mort's Answer:
Allow the asparagus to go to seed this summer. Cut it back in mid September. In the beginning of October, you can dig a trench that is 1 inch deep and 1 inch wide for as long as necessary to accommodate each plant about 18 inches apart. The trench can be refilled with loam, that is rich with aged manure at the bottom 2 inches. The remainder of the soil should be a third peat. Crowns of the asparagus should be at the old soil line at the top. Make an indentation on the edges of the trench. This will allow the rain water to be trapped. On top of the soil, you can add some granular 5-10-10 fertilizer. Let the plants go to seed each summer and cut them every fall.

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Question: 179-5201
When is a good time to cut back asparagus? Rose, Niantic, CT

Mort's Answer:
After you allow the spears to grow to seed, the lacy tops will feed the roots for next years stems. You can cut them down to the ground in late summer or early fall.

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Question: 180-5201
I would like to split my asparagus this year. When should I do it? Donald, Rock Tavern, NY.

Mort's Answer:
It is best to wait until the late or mid fall, which would be the end of September in your area. Dig out the whole row and lay the plants on their sides. Cut through the top and root at the same time like a cleave of pork chop. Be sure to get sufficient root (around two inches thick for each new plant). Dig two new trenches that are a foot deep and a foot wide for as long a sit takes to receive all the new plants 18 inches apart. The new soil should be rich in composted material with well rotted manure. It should be slightly mounded to the center with a little gully on each side of the new trench. After they are planted, you can cut off the tops. Line each side of the plants with a handful of bonemeal sprinkled on the soil. Asparagus love phosphorus and rich organic soil.

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Question: 181-5201
I get a tiny little bug (1/8 th of an inch) in my asparagus spears the last two years. What can I use to get rid of it? Raymond, Middlesboro, KY

Mort's Answer:
Fly larvae attach themselves in the late summer. Old debris should be removed in the fall. Rotenone with pyrethrum can be applied to the soil before the spears come up. Sevin dust can be applied, when the spears are a couple of inches high. Either application will suffice, if the infestation is not heavy. The rotenone also comes in combination with other organic compounds. Sevin is best applied at first sighting of the specks. Sevin is a contact spray and only lasts a couple of days.

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Question: 564-2511
When is a good time to cut back asparagus? Rose, Niantic

Mort's Answer:
After you allow the spears to grow to seed, the lacy tops will feed the roots for next year's stems. You can cut them down to the ground in late summer or early fall.

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Question: 583-3011
I planted asparagus two years ago with a good quality potting soil in an eight inch trench. They got bushy too early. What am I doing wrong? John, Norwich, CT

Mort's Answer:
You will need to dig them out this fall and start anew. Asparagus need a loose soil in a two foot trench that is at least 18 inches deep. Use good soil with aged manure and some bonemeal. It is good to let it go to seed but yours is premature. Those little green spears should appear quite early. You can side dress with 5-10-10, when they sprout. Cut back the top growth every fall.

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Question: 613-3711
My asparagus looks sparse this first year. Is there any special care to keep it healthy? Andy, Austin, TX

Mort's Answer:
You should start over this fall, if you did not build a trench that is two feet deep and 18 inches wide. This trench should be filled with 50% organic matter, like grass clippings , aged manure and peat. Your regular soil can make up the other 50%. Add bonemeal to the equation and till it into the soil before planting the old plants in the new bed. Pick the spears in the spring and let the plants go to seed every year after harvesting.

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Question: 720-1212
What is the best way to plant asparagus plants? John, Norwich, CT

Mort's Answer:
You need to dig a trench that is two feet deep and a foot wide. Roots can be a foot apart. In southeast Connecticut, you ned to put three inches of sand at the bottom for good drainage. Your soil needs to amended with a third composted material and aged manure. Let the plants go to seed in late summer or early fall. Some bonemeal on the top or 5-10-10 eat year will supplement your soil.

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Question: 763-2312
I cut back my asparagus which was early this year. It is leaning over again. Can I cut it once more? It was planted in a 12 inch trench with plenty of manure underneath. Dave, Taylorvlle, IL

Mort's Answer:
Besides the early heat in zone 6, we are getting a lot of rain in May. You can cut back again but I would also add a side dressing of bonemeal. This will help strengthen the stems. You have a disproportionate amount of nitrogen that has lengthened the spears.

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Question: 1093-714
How can I start asparagus from seed and crowns? Should I start seeds in my greenhouse? Bill, Tulsa, OK

Mort's Answer:
You can start seeds in a cool greenhouse now in zone 7. Seeds can be started in peat pots with a rich potting soil. Crowns will need a trench that is at least 18 inches wide and deep as soon as the soil thaws. This little bush requires the richest soil with a strong sense of humus. Aged manure, shredded leaves and grass clippings from lawns that had no herbicide will be excellent supplements. Crowns and peat pots need a minimum of 10 inches of well mixed soil under them. Your first year should be to establish the plants with no cutting. The second year plant requires some cuts in the spring. From the third year on, let the entire row go to seed every summer after cuts.

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Question: 1149-3114
My asparagus are still producing spears. Should I let it go to seed now? Valerie, Ashburnham, MA

Mort's Answer:
It is always a good idea to let your asparagus plant go to seed when it has finished producing good fruit. We have had a cooler than normal summer and spring. May was very unusual in New England. Continue to harvest the fruits of your labor until the texture hardens. Your tomatoes, peppers and eggplant may be late, but we could have an Indian summer.

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Question: 1274-2715
What is the best way to transplant asparagus? Virginia, Sheffield, IL

Mort's Answer:
Allow the asparagus to go to seed this summer. Cut it back in mid September. In the beginning of October, you can dig a trench that is 1 foot deep and 1 foot wide for as long as necessary to accommodate each plant about 18 inches apart. The trench can be refilled with loam, that is rich with aged manure at the bottom 2 inches. The remainder of the soil should be a third peat. Crowns of the asparagus should be at the old soil line at the top. Make an indentation on the edges of the trench. This will allow the rain water to be trapped. On top of the soil, you can add some granular 5-10-10 fertilizer. Let the unharvested plants go to seed each summer and cut them every fall.

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Question: 1429-1917
My 40 year old asparagus bed is getting a little piqued. It is about 40 feet long. Any ideas? Len, Norwich, CT

Mort's Answer:
It is time for some thinning. You can remove six inches every foot and build a second bed or widen the present one. The new trench has to be two feet deep and a foot wide. You can put aged manure at the bottom of the pit with good loam above it. After the trench and the plants are in, put 5-10-10 fertilized on the top. This chill take care of the root of your problem.

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