How to Grow Asparagus in Colorado

Posted by Jeena Lugo on

Growing asparagus is a rewarding experience, especially if you live in Colorado, where the conditions are perfect for cultivating this perennial vegetable. In this blog post, we will discuss how to grow asparagus seeds in Colorado, including starting asparagus seeds indoors, planting, and caring for your plants.

How to Grow Asparagus in Colorado

Starting Asparagus Seeds Indoors

Asparagus is a perennial vegetable that can live up to 15 years or more, so starting asparagus seeds indoors is an excellent investment for your garden. You can start your asparagus seeds indoors in late winter, around mid-February or early March.

To start your asparagus seeds indoors, you will need to fill a seed tray or small pots with a good quality potting mix. Plant your seeds about 1/2 inch deep, and keep the soil moist until the seeds germinate. Once the seedlings have sprouted, you can move them to a sunny window or a grow light.

Transplanting Asparagus Seedlings

After the danger of frost has passed in early spring, you can transplant your asparagus seedlings into your garden. Asparagus prefers a sunny spot with well-drained soil, so choose a location that receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day. Asparagus also prefers a sandy loam soil, so make sure your soil is well-drained and aerated.

Before planting your asparagus, prepare the soil by removing any weeds and adding organic matter, such as compost or aged manure. Asparagus plants grow deep roots, so make sure you dig a hole that is at least 8 inches deep and 12 inches wide. Plant your asparagus seedlings about 18 inches apart, and make sure the crown of the plant is about 2 inches below the soil level.

Planting Female Asparagus Plants

Asparagus plants can be either male or female, and it's essential to choose the right type of plant for your garden. Female plants produce seeds, which can take energy away from the plant, so it's best to choose male plants or hybrid varieties that are specifically bred for their high yield and excellent flavor.

Caring for Your Asparagus Bed

To keep your asparagus bed weed-free, mulch the soil with a layer of organic matter, such as straw or wood chips. Mulching will also help retain moisture in the soil and regulate the soil temperature. Asparagus plants need at least 1 inch of water per week, so make sure to water them regularly, especially during dry spells.

In the first year, it's best to harvest lightly to allow the plants to establish a strong root system. Cut spears when they are about 6-8 inches tall, and only harvest for about two weeks. In the second year, you can harvest for about three weeks, and in the third year, you can harvest for about four weeks. After that, you can harvest for up to eight weeks per year.

Companion Plants for Asparagus

Asparagus plants benefit from the companionship of other plants, which can help deter pests and improve soil health. Good companion plants for asparagus include tomatoes, basil, parsley, and marigolds. Avoid planting asparagus near plants in the onion family, such as garlic and onions, as they can stunt the growth of asparagus.

In conclusion, growing asparagus in Colorado is a relatively easy task if you follow the steps outlined in this blog post. Remember to start your asparagus seeds indoors, choose male or hybrid plants, plant in a sunny spot with well-drained soil, keep your asparagus bed weed-free, and harvest lightly in the first few years. With proper care, your asparagus plants will provide you with delicious and healthy produce for years to come.

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