Stages of Growing Asparagus. Learn Step By Step

The stages of growing asparagus are composed of planting, maintenance and care, and harvesting. Growing asparagus is straightforward, but like all crops, this perennial vegetable has a set of requirements for each stage. Failure to do so will affect the crops’ yield and quality, but one should not get discouraged with growing asparagus. 

You can cultivate asparagus inside a greenhouse if you have limitations in the ideal conditions and requirements. Refer to Krostrade.com and learn more about how greenhouses will maximize your area’s full potential for growing crops like asparagus. Since asparagus can have a production time longer than decades, using a greenhouse will help you manage the daily conditions without fail.  

Stages of Growing Asparagus. Learn Step By Step

 

Different Stages of Growing Asparagus

Unlike other crops, growing asparagus only requires three steps. You must learn the correct way to plant, maintain and care, and harvest your plants. By the end of this article, you should be ready to pursue asparagus farming. 

1. Planting

You can either plant asparagus seeds or crowns in the early spring with the soil temperature at around 50°F. If you choose the crowns, you are simply starting with a year-old asparagus plant’s root system. This is advantageous in skipping the laborious weeding as you would with asparagus seeds.

Is asparagus hard to grow?

Asparagus is not hard to grow as long as you ensure the conditions from the crowns or seeds’ quality to the soil and temperature requirements. You can grow the plants yourself using a greenhouse so that you won’t experience inconsistencies with the weather and supplies.

When planting both seeds and crows, choose an area that receives full sun. You can opt for a bed in the greenhouse that you’re confident of having exposure to sunlight for at least 8 hours a day. This way, the spears will grow thick and healthy. 

As for the soil, it should be sandy and have a pH of around 6.5 to 7.5. It’s ideal for planting in raised beds, but growing asparagus in pots is a sustainable option if you have few resources. However, be aware that the containers should be big enough to prevent rot and overcrowding.

 

Planting asparagus seeds

You can plant asparagus seeds indoors and then take them outdoors for a week once they are 12 inches tall. After the last frost of spring, it’s best to transplant the asparagus plants to a temporary garden bed. The transplants will mature in the fall, and you can select the high-yielding male plants to transfer into your permanent bed. 

Planting asparagus crowns

With asparagus crowns, they require a trench that is 18 inches wide and 8 inches deep. Allocate a space of 3 feet among these trenches and a 2-inch ridge of soil on each trench. This is where you’ll place the crowns 18 inches apart and drape their roots out. 

How long does it take to grow asparagus?

It will take you three years to grow asparagus. It can be tempting to start harvesting since you will find spears during the first two years. However, asparagus is one of those crops that require a long time to establish themselves. 

You can cut the dead foliage during the first year before side-dressing the crops with compost. This will allow the asparagus plants to thrive and produce abundant crops in the subsequent years. Waiting before harvesting asparagus will create stronger roots that will benefit you for years to come.

2. Maintenance and care

An issue that one can expect with growing asparagus is the growth of weeds. The first two years are usually dedicated to the management of weeds until the plants fill the area. To reduce and smother weeds, mulch compost around the plants right from the start. 

As for the feeding and watering, asparagus plants require 2 inches of water in the first two years. In the greenhouse, you can manage this easily with drip irrigation. You can then feed your plants with liquid fertilizer in the spring and fall. 

Does asparagus multiply?

While it will take you three years to harvest asparagus spears, these plants multiply quickly. This is also the same reason why measuring the bed and pots is essential before planting. Asparagus plants are prone to overcrowding, and to solve this, you need to cut and move some plants. 

You should also cut down the dead foliage 2 inches above the ground for the first two years. Removing the old foliage will keep pests and diseases more manageable. Experts recommend cutting back asparagus in the fall or until the foliage has turned brown or yellow. 

 

Does asparagus spread on its own?

Asparagus will spread on their own when the plants have established after two years. It would be best if you considered that each plant would need 5 feet of space to prepare for filling in. Allowing them to fern until they die is another practice to strengthen asparagus plants for the next spear production.

3. Harvesting

What does asparagus look like when it is ready?

Asparagus spears are ready for harvesting when they are about 8 to 10 inches tall. However, younger spears are more tender, which is also a common preference in asparagus. A soil temperature of 50°F is also a good indication that the spears are ready for harvest. 

Cut off the spears at ground level for 6 to 8 weeks. However, be mindful of the vigour of your crops and stop immediately if needed. If the spears’ diameter gets as small as a pencil, it’s time to stop harvesting.

If your harvesting intervals are extended, you run the risk of getting tough asparagus. At the same time, leftover asparagus spears will encourage beetles in the ferns. Once you finish harvesting, apply fertilizers, and remove the weeds. 

Does asparagus regrow after cutting?

Asparagus regrow after cutting because it is a perennial plant. The spears will return each year so that asparagus production can go as long as 30 years. Therefore, you should leave 1 to 2 spears that will replenish the output for the next season.

At this point, fertilize and mulch the bed in preparation for the growth in spring. You can also mow down the dead ferns in the fall. Lastly, be careful not to till the beds since this can damage the crowns. 

Conclusion

Asparagus is a crop that can give you up to 30 years of production. Educating yourself with the stages of growing asparagus from planting, maintenance and care, to harvesting, will ensure you a sustainable crop production. However, you must understand that patience and consistency are essential in growing asparagus plants.

One must wait for three years before starting their harvest of asparagus spears. It is also essential to plan the spacing and conditions of the area that the crops will use. Growing asparagus in the greenhouse will allow you to maintain proper spacing and conditions. 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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