Friday, April 24, 2020

Set for Asparagus

Work on the asparagus bed has been delayed all week because our temps have been so cold that the compost I needed to spread on top of the rows was frozen.

Fortunately and hurray, today dawned bright and sunny and Jack Frost finally decided to give us a break and we could dig down into the compost for enough to get all the homemade fertilizer needed.

I had finished weeding so the bed was ready.  Here are the three rows spread with the good-looking compost all along the top.

Next I tilled between the rows to loosen the soil, then raked it up over the compost on top of the rows.

I like to put down a heavy layer of mulch (old hay with no seeds left in it) between the rows so it's always dry and "clean" to walk (or kneel) on when I harvest the asparagus spears.

No mulch as of yet on the outside of the right and left rows.  On the left I want to expand the plowed up soil (where it's now sod) because I didn't originally leave enough space there when we made the bed.  Papa Pea is going to put his mighty muscles to work on that project tomorrow.

On the far right, there's enough room that I use as planting space for other veggies (or flowers) so I'll keep that weeded but won't mulch it until later.

Feels good to have the asparagus in good shape.  Now grow, you little green spears, grow!


tpals said...

You do good work...want to come play in my garden? ;)

The Happy Whisk said...

Here's to Jack Frost staying away from your asparagus.

J.L. Murphey said...

Echoing your wish about the cold staying away from your asparagus. Mine shots are about 2' tall. I wish I could cut some. There's enough for a couple of serving of beef and asparagus stir-fry.

Tressa said...

Where or how do you find old hay with no seeds?

Mama Pea said...

tpals - I would LOVE to! I so wish some of us who are interested in the same things lived closer together. What a support group we could form that way!

The Happy Whisk - We've got a nice weekend ahead of us but then cooler temps :o( and rain all next week. But we need the rain so we'll be happy about getting it.

J.L. Murphey - See? There would be another advantage if we all lived within close proximity. I'd be happy to harvest your asparagus for you so you could make beef and asparagus stir-fry. I'd even offer to taste some of it! ;o)

Tressa - It was some not-great quality hay that we traded for and have let sit out in the elements for going on two years. That gave it time for all the weed and grain seeds to die off. I've mulch with hay that had seeds in it before and oh my! What a disaster. Like planting weeds in the garden!

NanaDiana said...

I think it is either two or three years before you can harvest? Can't remember. I love fresh asparagus. Lucky you to have it growing at your place. xo Diana

Goatldi said...

MP do you have any info on asparagus beds in raised beds? We have so many gophers here we have two choices. Either laying down hardware or gopher wire or raised beds. Since I haven’t decided on a permanent spot yet for my garden it would not be smart to sink anything into the ground.

And yes I do understand the forever concept with asparagus. I also don’t want to wait another year to at least get started.

wisps of words said...

Hooray for some planting!!!

Our son/daughter in law next door, have been planting already. Seems soon, for around here. Warm and sunny today. Rain, showers, possible snow coming this week.

Open soon, please.
Healthy and Young
go back to work.

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Mama Pea said...

NanaDiana - We planted our asparagus in 2015 and took no harvest that year. In 2016, per instructions from the place we ordered the roots from, we harvested for only ten days. In 2017, we could harvest for 3-4 weeks, but no more. In 2018 when the roots had been planted for three years, we harvested for the full season, usually about 6-8 weeks. Last year, 2019, we harvested and ate fresh asparagus sometimes two times a day (so good popped into boiling water for only about a minute!) and I was able to freeze enough that we still have several servings left now in April. It's hard to wait after planting an asparagus bed, but once it gets going it lasts many, many years!

Goatldi - Gosh, I have no experience or have not read of anyone planting asparagus in raised beds. It wouldn't hurt to contact Nourse Farms (where we got our roots) with your question. I've made a couple of inquiries of them and they've been very helpful. As for your gophers, I think I'd consider a lot of gopher stew. :o\

wisps of words - It's always a cwap shoot as to how early we can all get by with planting! We had a gorgeous day today (our warmest so far this spring) and tomorrow should be the same. Then . . . rain all next week. But the night time temps are supposed to stay above freezing so for us, that's progress!

Goatldi said...

Ugh. They are a plaque here. Couldn’t stop stop they just for being out numbered. All the nurseries make a brisk business selling gopher cages when selling a tree or scrub. To put around the roots.

Mama Pea said...

Goatldi - Just goes to show we all have our different challenges when it comes to gardening, doesn't it? Yikes.

daisy g said...

Best wishes with your crop. We planted asparagus for the first time this year. Looking forward to harvesting in the coming years.

Great idea about letting the hay sit for a while to ensure no trouble with weeds.

Happy gardening!

Mama Pea said...

daisy g - Congrats on your asparagus planting this year. Even though planting the roots is kind of a chore and then waiting almost three years to get an ample crop is hard even for a patient person (that would not be me!), the wonderful early green, nutritious veggie that produces and produces for many years is well worth it! Hope your planting is super-successful!

SmartAlex said...

that polar vortex was a blast wasn't it? We had freezing wind for three days, and on the third, driving snow all day. Glad its gone. I hope Spring is finally here.

Mama Pea said...

SmartAlex - Do you think we can count on it? Hubby didn't think I should uncover the strawberries yesterday because of the fickle weather, but he did admit that they look to have grown 2" already just since I removed the mulch! (Yay, Spring! Spring? Spring, are you there?!)

Nancy @ Little Homestead In Boise said...

Looks great! I love asparagus but I'd have to find some room. We had gopher problems at our last house, none now, too urban I think. It's been milder here, low 70, raining today and 53, headed for 80+ for Wed., then cooler. Planted more seeds out side yesterday, finger crossed!

Mama Pea said...

Nancy - If we had your weather, I'd be planting like crazy! We have a rainy day (which we needed) and had a low of 37° over night with 42° right now at 1:30 p.m.

The Happy Whisk said...

Glad you're getting the rain that you guys need.

Vivian Holmes said...

I am in Geogia and have had asparagus in a dedicated raised bed for years. It does great. My bed is 4x8 ft and 2- 2x12 boards tall.

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