Asparagus officinalis is a spring vegetable, a flowering perennial plant species in the genus Asparagus. It was once classified in the lily family, like its Allium cousins, onions and garlic, but the Liliaceae have been split and the onion-like plants are now in the family Amaryllidaceae and asparagus in the Asparagaceae.
Asparagus multiflorus will climb given the opportunity or, standing alone becomes a large tangled shrub. It may reach 2 m in height and width. The many pale green zigzagging stems are hard and slightly hairy. Stems have fine longitudinal lines or ridges along the surface. The nodes are just thick knobs with no spines. Small branchlets emerge from these knobs on which the tiny cylindrical cladodes or leaf-like stems grow. The flowers are positioned in the cladode fascicles. They are small and white, blooming in midsummer. The plant grows on the coast and inland in parts of the Eastern Cape and eastern parts of the Western Cape, including the Little Karoo. The boiled young stems of Asparagus multiflorus are sometimes eaten as a vegetable. Cutting the old stems back at the end of winter stimulates new growth suitable for harvesting. The taste is different from the conventional cooked asparagus.
USDA Zone - 8
Season to sow - Spring / Autumn
Sign up to our newsletter to be the first to hear about our latest offers, growing tips and products!