Growing Asparagus Zone 10: How to Grow Thriving Asparagus Plants

Asparagus doesn’t just make your meals tastier, but it’s packed with nutrients that can help with weight loss, blood pressure management, and digestion. Thanks to its ferny foliage, this perennial veggie is also a great ornamental. All these benefits of asparagus make it a must-have plant in your garden. But before you start shopping for asparagus crowns, you need to ask yourself – will asparagus survive in USDA climate zone 10?

Can Asparagus Thrive in Zone 10?

growing asparagus zone 10

You can grow asparagus in most temperate regions. However, this plant prefers cooler areas that experience long winters, preferably from zone 4 to 9. The biggest challenge with zone 10 is that it experiences hot summers and mild winters. Temperatures here can be as hot as 70°F, and the winters experience a minimum low temperature of 30°F.

Even though asparagus is temperature-sensitive, it can do well in areas that experience a daytime temperature of 75 to 85°F. These are the summer temperatures in Zone 10. And as long as you meet the other requirements for growing asparagus, you should be able to grow this plant in zone 10. A word of caution, asparagus is most likely to thrive in zone 10a than 10b. It’s because zone 10a is a bit cooler. If you live in zone 10b, it would be best to explore other vegetables such as eggplant and coriander.

As a gardener, it’s essential to have realistic expectations. And that can best be achieved through familiarizing yourself with information such as the one discussed above. Knowing the conditions that asparagus requires will help you avoid surprises and disappointments in the future.

How to Grow Asparagus in Zone 10?

growing asparagus zone 10

Choose the Best Variety

The first thing gardeners in zone 10 need to do when planting asparagus is choosing varieties well-suited for such an environment. These plants need a dormancy period which can either be triggered by low temperatures or drought. If you live in zone 10, you need to opt for varieties that prefer warmer climates. Examples include; Atlas, Apollo, De Paoli, and UC157. These are the common types of asparagus that you will find in Southern Florida and Southern California.

Please note that extreme temperatures of more than 85°F can slow down the development of roots and shoots. Secondly, high temperatures can also lead to the premature opening of shoots which lowers vegetable quality.

Plant at the Right Time

When growing asparagus, sticking to a strict schedule is vital. This vegetable should be planted during late winter or early spring. Asparagus is a cold-hardy plant, and it should be able to survive the low temperatures experienced in zone 10, which are around 35°F. The earlier you plant asparagus, the better your chances are of getting a good harvest.

For those in zone 10, the right time is between January and February. There are also some gardeners who get a good harvest when they plant in October. If you plant this vegetable anytime after that, it may not grow to maturity.

While we are still on planting, we should cover the following. Asparagus is grown from 1-year-old plants referred to as crowns. You can also grow them from seeds, but these require a lot of work, especially with weeding. If you are enthusiastic about asparagus, you can grow them as seeds indoors and bring them out after winter when they are at least three months old.

Adequately Prepare the Planting Site

What we love most about asparagus is that it’s a perennial and can provide you with veggies for up to twenty years. So, you should know it’s worth every effort invested. When preparing the plant site, you first need to pick a spot that receives full sun exposure. Being a perennial, pick a spot in the garden where it won’t be disturbed by annual plants.

The other thing about asparagus is it doesn’t like sitting on a pool of water. Ensure the bed is well-drained. Alternatively, you can opt for a raised bed. A soil p of 6.5 should promote growth. Loose soil is excellent for asparagus since it allows crowns to root without difficulty. Please keep weeds at bay, and creating at least a two-inch layer of compost-aged manure will benefit your asparagus.

Plant and Harvest Your Asparagus

Crowns should be planted at least 12 inches apart. It’s best to soak them first in lukewarm water before planting. Asparagus should be planted in trenches around 15 inches wide and 7 inches deep. There are two methods of planting asparagus. We have the little-by-little method where you cover crowns with topsoil, wait for the spears to grow, before adding more soil and so on till the trenches are full. The other more popular method known as all-at-once entails filling the trench with compost and soil. With this latter option, you have to ensure the soil is loose to enable roots to grow.

When it’s time to harvest asparagus, skip the first and second years. Harvesting early can weaken the plant. Cut dead foliage within this duration. After two years, you can start enjoying your asparagus.

Any Pests and Diseases You Should Be Worried About?

If you decide to plant asparagus, prepare to have a tough time dealing with weeds. They tend to grow close to this plant and can hinder their growth. It would be best to practice regular hand pulling of weeds, especially in spring and summer. Be careful not to damage growing asparagus spears.

The other pest you need to be cautious of is the asparagus beetle. This insect can lead to the damage of seeds and defoliation of the plant. You will have to inspect and remove asparagus beetles physically. The same applies to cutworms. Avoid flooding the bed since that can cause asparagus rust.

Tips on Growing Asparagus in Zone 10

  • Always opt for male asparagus plants because they are more productive. Female asparagus use up a lot of energy in producing berries and are, therefore, not as productive.
  • Regularly supplement your asparagus with organic fertilizer.
  • Planting asparagus on a raised bed prevents root rot.
  • If you must grow asparagus from seeds in zone 10, start with growing them indoors before transplanting them when the temperatures stabilize.
  • Don’t harvest asparagus when the plant is still weak.

Growing asparagus zone 10: Final Thoughts

Undoubtedly, asparagus is more delicious when eaten fresh from the garden. This is one of the few plants that can provide you with an unlimited supply of vegetables for ten to fifteen years. Amongst most gardeners, asparagus is a favorite choice.

For gardeners living in zone 10, the climate may not be very conducive for asparagus growth, but you should be able to enjoy this nutritious plant straight from your garden with proper care and maintenance. Hopefully, the above guide will enable you to grow asparagus in zone 10 successfully.

Related Article: Asparagus Growth Stages: What to Expect When Growing Asparagus?