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Asparagus in clay

4 Mar Heavy Clay

Bed of clay

My garden bed along the front of the house (where I planted the green manure) has lots of clay. You only need to dig 6 inches before you hit it, and I haven’t yet managed to dig through it. I guess the pragmatic solution to this problem is to avoid planting root crops in the bed, but the easterly edge of the bed is really sunny, and otherwise perfect for asparagus.

I have three different varieties of asparagus growing. I bought an established purple asparagus plant from The Diggers Club and seeds for standard green hybrid asparagus and a variety called “Fat Bastard”. I’ve been raising the seeds in my greenhouse, and they are amazing. The tiny first shoot that emerges looks like a perfect, tiny asparagus spear – so cute!

Lime on the clay

So, determined not to let common wisdom or gardening convention get in my way, P and I started preparing the clay pit for my asparagus.  We started by digging the clay out of the hole, then we added some lime and broke the clay up a little bit.

In goes the cow manure

Then we added 25 litres of cow manure and mixed it around with the soil we had removed. After that was done, the soil wasn’t perfect, but it looks much better. I then planted my plant and little seedlings, mulched with lucerne, and watered in well. Am I stupid? Destined for failure? Should I rethink this before it’s too late?

Planted purple asparagus


Heavy Clay