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3rd Year Asparagus …and they’re off!

(cue movie voice-over guy)

It’s been three years in the making…
and one woman has been waiting a lifetime…
but will she be ready for…

ASPARAGUS HARVEST 2010!

(fade in on woman in garden hat, carrying gardening pruners, running from the kitchen door to the asparagus bed.  She snips a few spears with a smile on her face, runs back to the kitchen.

Clock shows that 5 minutes passes.

Cut to asparagus patch. Close up on asparagus growing before your eyes.

Woman runs back out into the garden with pruners to cut more asparagus.  Woman starts to look worried, goes back into the house.

Sun sets as asparagus grows out of control)


This is my fear.  After 3 years of not picking any of the asparagus from the crowns we planted, the time has finally come.  But as I am finding out, asparagus waits for no one.  You have to pick it before it gets too long or else you miss out.  I’ve been picking a few spears each morning, and more recently in the afternoon as well.  Since it’s the beginning of the season, it’s slow at first, but I’m imaging that the scene above will be my life in a couple weeks. 

I had the realization this morning that one probably shouldn’t go on vacation during the 8 weeks that asparagus is harvested, or else one would miss the whole thing.  I’m sure there is a way to guide the timing around vacations – probably by not cutting back the fall/winter growth until returning from a trip, but I’m just starting to experiment with this, so I’ll keep you posted.

newasparagus1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In any case – the promise of fresh asparagus is finally being satiated this spring after 16 years of longing for a place to grow this delicate vegetable.  As the spears reach between 4-6 inches tall, I cut them at the soil level (or just underneath the soil – but carefully so as not to accidentally cut any hidden spears).  Then I wash them, pat them dry and wrap them in a paper towel.  They get stored in a plastic bag in the refrigerator until use.  Here is a shot of the first batch of pickings over the last few days:

freshasparagus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t ask me where the purple asparagus came from. I planted only green varieties, but I’m happy as a clam that one crown turned out to be purple.  Aren’t they gorgeous?!

You can find more info on growing asparagus in this blog here:

Planting Asparagus Crowns

Are you harvesting asparagus?  Let us know how you’re managing your crop – post it here.

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