Considering what asparagus companion plants to grow on the same space with asparagus? These article contains some of the companion plants and also other plants you must avoid mixing with asparagus.
Remember that just as there are asparagus companion plants, there other plants that do not do well when planted together with asparagus. This article will deal with both so that you will have a fulfilling vegetable gardening journey.
Table of Contents
What is Asparagus?
Asparagus is the name of the green vegetable that is the young shoot of a flowering plant. The young shoots of the asparagus plant are the part that is eaten, and it is a very nutritious food.
Asparagus has been cultivated in Europe since ancient times, but was unknown in North America until colonists brought it over from England in 1767.
Benefits of Asparagus
You may already know this, but asparagus is an excellent source of vitamins A and C and folate. Asparagus also contains a good amount of fiber, making it high in nutrients while also low in calories.
In addition to being delicious and versatile, asparagus can help prevent or reduce high blood pressure, heart disease and colorectal cancer.
It’s been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties that are beneficial for the heart as well. The fiber content helps regulate digestion by adding bulk to food moving through your intestines so you feel full longer (and thus eat less).
Asparagus also contains silica—a mineral that promotes bone growth, helping keep our bones strong into old age!
Uses of Asparagus
Asparagus has been used in cooking since ancient times, and it’s still a popular ingredient today. It can be eaten raw or cooked—the latter method is more common.
Asparagus can be prepared in many ways: boiled, steamed, roasted on a grill, or added to soups and salads. There are also many asparagus recipes that include other ingredients like tomatoes or bacon.
The health benefits of asparagus include:
- Helps prevent cancer (1)
- Contains antioxidants that help lower cholesterol levels (2)
- May reduce the risk of diabetes (3)
- Boosts memory and cognitive function (4)
The nutritional value of one cup of chopped raw asparagus is: 0 calories; 5 grams carbohydrate; 1 gram protein; 0 grams fat; 4 grams fiber; 0 milligrams vitamin A; 100% daily intake for vitamin K1; 19% daily intake for vitamin C.
How to Grow or Plant Asparagus
Growing asparagus from seed is a bit tricky, but it’s not impossible. If you have a packet of seeds and want to give this method a try, start by soaking the seeds in water for 24 hours.
Then plant them in pots containing perlite or peat moss and place them in an area that gets at least 6 hours of sunlight each day.
The soil should be damp but not wet—too much water will kill young seedlings! Water your plants regularly until they sprout leaves.
Once they’ve grown to about 1 foot tall, you can move the pots outdoors during spring and summer months. During winter months (and any time temperatures drop below 40 degrees F), bring your asparagus indoors again so that it doesn’t freeze outside!
Tips For Growing Asparagus
Growing asparagus is simple, but there are a few things to keep in mind. While the plant itself is hardy and easy to grow, it does need special conditions in order to thrive.
- Soil should be well drained and have a pH of 6.5–7; add compost before planting if necessary.* Plant asparagus crowns or seedlings 12–18″ apart in rows 4′ apart.* Water regularly during hot weather; let the soil dry out slightly between waterings.* Harvest young spears when they’re 5–8″ tall—they’ll be less woody than older stalks!
Asparagus Companion Plants
Asparagus is a perennial plant and will tolerate many kinds of soil. It can grow in full sun or partial shade and needs good drainage. Asparagus can be started from seed, or purchased as transplants at your local nursery or home store.
Asparagus is a good companion plant for many vegetables and herbs. Below are some examples
Companion Plants For Asparagus That Deter Pests
Several plants can help deter common asparagus pests, creating a healthier growing environment.
Marigolds are one of the most versatile companion plants. The strong scent of marigolds helps mask the odor of asparagus, making it harder for pests to locate. Marigold roots also exude a substance that is toxic to harmful nematodes in the soil. Interplant marigolds throughout the asparagus patch or use them as a border.
Basil is thought to repel thrips, which can damage developing spears. Plant basil densely around the perimeter of the asparagus row. Choosing pest-resistant varieties like sweet basil can provide extra protection.
Garlic and Onions
Garlic and onions help deter aphids, beetles, and other insects that feast on asparagus. Plant garlic cloves and onion sets in and around the asparagus rows. As alliums, they will not compete for nutrients.
Asparagus Companion Plants that Attract Beneficials
Incorporating plants that attract pollinators and other beneficial predators can also keep pests in check.
Nasturtiums produce bright, edible flowers that lure aphid-eating insects. The vines are easy to grow from seed and look beautiful spilling over the bed’s edge.
The bright orange and yellow blooms of calendula attract pollinators like bees and hoverflies. These beneficial insects prey on aphids, mites, and caterpillars. Calendula petals are also edible.
Flowering thyme attracts pollinators while providing an aromatic, ornamental border. The spreading habit of thyme helps prevent weeds.
Asparagus Companion Plants that Enrich the Soil
Some plants help boost nutrients in the soil through nitrogen fixation or dynamic accumulation. This can reduce the need for fertilizer.
Peas and Beans
- As legumes, peas and beans form symbiotic relationships with soil bacteria to convert atmospheric nitrogen into a plant-available form. Bush-type beans and peas are best, as they will not grow over emerging asparagus spears.
Comfrey’s deep roots mine nutrients from the subsoil, making them available near the surface where asparagus feeds. Its large leaves can be cut and used as nutritious mulch. Be sure to plant comfrey away from the spears to prevent crowding.
Benefits of companion planting for asparagus?
One will ask, “What are the benefits of companion planting for asparagus?”.
Companion planting is a great way to increase the health and yield of your asparagus plants. Here’s what you can expect:
- Reduction in pest and disease problems. Companion planting helps to reduce the severity of pests and diseases by attracting beneficial insects that feed on the bad bugs. This can help keep your asparagus crop healthier, reducing the need for chemical pesticides or fertilizers.
- Increased pollination efficiency. Companion plantings also benefit pollination because they attract bees and other pollinating insects which transfer pollen from one plant to another, leading to better fruit yields over time (source).
- Improved soil fertility through companion plants’ ability to fix nitrogen into the soil via their roots (source) or by providing additional organic matter through leaf litter (a feature shared by most companion plants).
Plants not to Grow as Asparagus Companion Plants
While asparagus is a perennial, it’s still wise to plant your asparagus in an area that doesn’t get too much shade. You also want to be careful about companion plants and other perennials you plant around your asparagus bed.
Try as much as possibly not to plant the following plants together with asparagus.
For example, if you plant onions or garlic next to your asparagus, their roots can take the nitrogen from the soil that would otherwise support your asparagus’ growth.
Plant potatoes in another part of the garden because their vines will compete with your young shoots for sun and nutrients.
Fennel, dill and cucumbers will also compete for space with your spears and spread rapidly; we recommend keeping these plants at least 20 feet away from growing zones where food is grown (or at least 10 feet away from each other).
Asparagus is a perennial vegetable that can be grown in small spaces and containers. It is also very nutritious, so you may want to consider growing it in your garden. Asparagus plants require a lot of care, but the rewards are worth it!
If your question is what plants grow well with asparagus, remember these plants; carrots, beets, basils are good asparagus companion plants that do well together with asparagus. These plants onions, garlics, dill, fennel, however need not be planted in the same space with asparagus.
If you found this article about asparagus companion plants helpful, please share with other gardeners and/or eat more asparagus!