Growing Asparagus in Maine - Check List: Follow these steps for the best chance of success with your asparagus plants!
Follow these steps for the best chance of success!
- Select sunny, well-drained site. Watch our video on site selection.
- Have the soil tested by the Maine Soil Testing Service using crop code 329. If you desire organic recommendations, add crop code 392 on your form. Because this is a perennial crop, the best time to properly amend and prepare the soil is before planting. Soil testing will provide the most accurate information for what is needed.
- Prepare site by removing all plant growth (grass, turf, weeds, etc.). The site for 10 asparagus crowns planted in one row should be at least 4 feet wide and at least 13 feet long (52 square feet). For a 2-row planting, prepare an area 8’ long and 7’ wide (56 square feet).
- Follow soil test recommendations to amend the soil for your new planting. Amend the soil pH by adding ground limestone (pelleted or loose), fertilizer (synthetic or organic), and pre-moistened peat moss or compost. Mix one half of the recommended limestone, fertilizer, and peat moss or compost thoroughly into soil before making a planting furrow (trench). Integrate fertilizer, limestone, and peat moss or compost throughout tilled area (use rake, hoe, cultivator, flat tined pitchfork or other garden tools).
- Prepare a trench for planting each crown (approximately 12” wide and 12” deep in the center of the prepared bed). Work in the remaining mix into the furrow bottom before setting the crowns.
- Space the asparagus crowns approximately 12” apart — allowing 2’ from each end of the planting bed.
- Gently spread root system outward without damaging the roots at planting. Cover the spread out roots with soil/organic matter mix. The planting trench can be filled completely at planting. See video.
- Plant deep enough to cover all roots.
- Water each plant with 1-2 gallons of water at planting.
- Keep the asparagus bed free of weeds. Hand pulling and cultivation of weeds are recommended. Once the spears emerge, you may want to place organic mulch such as weed-free straw, untreated bark mulch, pine needles or leaves as weed prevention.
- Provide 1 inch of water each week through the summer growing season to your planting.
- Mow any green growth (weeds, grasses, etc.) around the perimeter of your planting area at least 2 times each month throughout the growing season.
- Record planting date and the variety planted. Use our record sheet or design your own record sheet.
- Consider taking pictures of your work.
- Enjoy this opportunity in growing some of your own food.
- Tell others about your asparagus project.
Best wishes for a successful asparagus growing experience!