Asparagus Plants – Small Ferny Stalks
Q: Several years ago we planted asparagus crowns in a bed where they thrived. But six years ago they started producing small stalks with only ferny foliage. Could it be that the crowns have gone too deep?
A: I have never heard of asparagus roots going too deep. But asparagus plants can lose vigor if the soil becomes compacted or some other factor keeps the roots from growing healthily. They are heavy feeders and depend on regular summer fertilizing to make thick roots that produce big spears. Consider digging the plants carefully with a spading fork this fall, redoing the bed, and replanting them. Be sure to remove any weeds you find as you work.