How To Prepare Asparagus For Winter?

Winter can be a daunting time for the perennial vegetables which brave it out; sitting through the cold months under ground, through all the freezing temperatures and rainfall that the winter months bring.

If you learn how to prepare asparagus bed for winter, then your precious little vegetables will stay safe, and come out the other side of winter, raring to go and to produce more deliciousness for you and your family.

How To Prepare Asparagus Bed For Winter

how to prepare asparagus bed for winter

Asparagus really doesn’t like the colder months. It can survive a winter, and reward you by producing beautiful crops the following spring – as long as you look after it over winter, that is!

The first thing you need to do is ensure that your crowns are as strong and vigorous as they can be as they go into the winter months. Allow the frondy, leafy parts to die back naturally, without cutting them, to give the plant a better chance.

When the fronds die back and turn completely yellow, this is a sign that you can cut back this excess growth and start to prep your beds for the winter. Leaving the fronds completely on the patch can encourage the asparagus beetle.

If you like a visual instruction, here is a video on how to trim down the dead foliage and prepare your asparagus beds for the colder months:

Frost and cold winds can wreak havoc on your asparagus plants, as they are fleshy ones that hold a lot of water. Cold snaps can freeze the water in the cells of the plant, causing serious damage to the plant.

Asparagus plants will need some form of protection against the cold winter months, if they are to survive and continue to produce delicious crops for you for years to come.

  • Placing a heat trapping membrane on the soil, such as weed covering fabric, or Mypex, can really help asparagus get through the cold winter months, as this can warm up the soil and make it more suitable for asparagus growing.
  • Mulching the plants can also really help, as mulch will not only trap in the heat of the soil and from the sun, but can also help in keeping weeds down.
  • You can also use fleece on your beds; this will not only keep the roots of the plants warm, but can also trap the heat in the soil to make it a more suitable environment for a chilly asparagus plant.
  • Another option is to cover your plants, using a cloche or plastic.

Can Asparagus Grow In Cold Places?

Asparagus really won’t tolerate cold conditions. They can cope with other adverse conditions that some plants can’t handle, but cold, for asparagus, is a big no no.

If you live in a cold area, don’t despair! Asparagus can grow happily in a polytunnel or greenhouse, and the added warmth and safety can really improve the outlook of your plants.

If you have a greenhouse or polytunnel and you live in a chilly place, you should really consider growing your asparagus in these places, otherwise you may end up with tiny, stunted spears that are not much good for anything.

If you can’t do anything about the cold weather and have nowhere else to grow your asparagus but outside, then mulch and fleece and ground covering fabric will become your new best friends!

Keep the plants warm and covered during the coldest months, and add ground warming coverings to the soil even during the warmer months to ensure the best chances for your fussiest vegetable.

Will Asparagus Grow In Winter?

will asparagus grow in winter

The short answer is no. Asparagus, like most plants, will go dormant in the coldest months, preserving its energy for the spring and summer growing season.

You can still keep your plants alive during the winter, so that they will produce for you when the warmer weather comes – but you must take a bit of care of them so that they can survive through the harsh times.

Even if you live in a temperate area, your asparagus will experience a period of dormancy where it will not produce any new spears. Just be patient, keep your crowns warm, and they will reward you in the summer.

How To Protect Asparagus Against Cold?

Asparagus is not a cold hardy plant. They do not like frosts, cold wind, or prolonged periods of cold weather, so they need to be kept warm and cosy to ensure a good crop after the winter is over.

Mulching is the best way to keep asparagus warm. Mulching not only keeps the soil and the top of the roots warm, but it can also help to keep weeds down – two things that asparagus like very much!

You can also use sheep fleece to keep your plants warm – this will keep not only the top layers of soil toasty but will also penetrate lower down to warm up the roots of your asparagus and help improve the health of your crowns.

Placing black plastic on the soil can also warm the ground enough to give the roots a much needed boost of warmth; place this down in the late part of the season, to ensure that as much warmth from the sun is trapped as possible.

You can use a temporary, portable greenhouse; these are usually made of plastic with solid poles that can be pushed into the soil. This can create a moveable warm spot for your asparagus to protect it from the chill.

Final Thoughts

Asparagus is not a plant that likes cold weather. If you live in a cold area you will need to consider a way of keeping your plants warm by keeping them under cover and toasty.

Keeping asparagus going through the winter is a relatively simple process; all you need to do is keep the roots warm, and the plant itself protected from the elements, and you should be laughing!

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