How to Grow Asparagus from Seed – A Long Term Post

germinationHere in a post that could encapsulate a long term commitment to Real Men Sow and my garden. For I am attempting to grow asparagus from seed. This is one of two growing projects that I will be blogging about in the next few days, both of which will take four or so years before I can call them successful.

I want to make these post dynamic, updating and adding as things happen. Of course, that might mean that the post dies with the seedlings, or it may be a glorious four year journey from seed to homegrown asparagus dinner.

Here goes nothing: the first update on How to Grow Asparagus From Seed.

May 9th 2013
Having sown my asparagus seeds 3-4 weeks ago, I’m now seeing some germination (pictured). To help with this, I soaked my seeds overnight, and sowed in modules of multipurpose compost the next morning.

Choosing a Variety
The best results come from all-male F1 hybrid cultivars, but I chose Connovers Colossal, a classic heritage variety. Non-hybrid seed like the Colossal produce female plants as well as male ones, and the female ones will need to be removed when I spot them as they will compete with the fellas.

Connovers Colossal seeds are supposed to be sown undercover between February and March, but I had to wait until the middle of April due to the unusually cold temperatures this year. The seeds needed temperatures upwards of 13 degrees Celsius to germinate.

Sowing
I put two seeds in each of my 24 modules to improve my chances of germination. So far, I’ve got ferns poking up in 15 of the modules, but I have read that the times between the first and last asparagus seeds germinating can vary a great deal.

I have been watering a lot, as the compost has been drying out quickly.

Why Grow From Seed?
I have asked myself why am growing from seed when I could buy year old crowns, but having that extra time to decide where the asparagus bed will go is useful. Being my first season in a smaller space, I need to understand my space and not make too many enduring commitments.

For example, asparagus’s deep root system will play a big role in determining its final position, as will the heaviness of the soil and where the sun falls.

Cost is also a factor, but more so is a sudden enjoyment of taking things slower. Having my veg patch in my garden has bred a feeling of building something over time that is mine. I don’t mind starting from scratch and taking a while over growing my asparagus.

As it goes, I’m rather excited about the impending satisfaction of growing my very own asparagus from seed – even if that is 4 years away. ..

7 thoughts on “How to Grow Asparagus from Seed – A Long Term Post”

  1. I planted asparagus from seed around 4 years ago in pots. A few plants have fallen by the wayside, but this year I have two plants with spears almost a pencil thick. Good luck! I can’t believe I manged it as I’m such a clutz in the garden but I did!

  2. As I was looking for hints on how to grow asparagus from seed I came across your blog, and realy enjoy reading other people’s thoughts on gardening, the pleasure of allotments I suppose. I don’t get why we are recommended by RHS and other wise owls to not grow female plants? My asparagus plants are lovely and two of the 12 plants are female and have the most lovely round seeds, like baubles on a Christmas tree. I was wanting to save them and use start of new plants for next year, to give away, sell or grow myself. They certainly aren’t a problem to me so far. Will the female plants die after producing seed? Don’t know this yet.

  3. I had some asparagus seeds of West Coast Seeds ,appararently a Canadian variety.Soaked them for two hours then planted in 10*20 inches potting tray of 24 potting spaces.
    in a week the seeds starting to germinate indoor.
    In three weeks they have grown more than 6 inches, however
    the stems are so thin. I don`t think the will survive outdoor .
    Would appreciate your help advising me on how to get the stem stronger. I am using a professional Dutch potting soil sustrate for seeds.The trays are behind the glass window, 2 hrs direct sunshine. Much obliged

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