Asked November 14, 2016, 2:27 PM EST

Living outside of Memphis TN, about 40 miles and planted asparagus for the first time this year. To what I have read, after the first frost, you cut the ferns down to about an inch above ground level then cover the total bed with compost. My question is this. Since we have not had a kill off freeze as of yet. Many cooler nights in the 40's may be 38 should I continue to wait for that killer frost or proceed now of cutting the ferns down and composting the entire bed? Also, how thick of a level bed of compost should I put down in either situation I described? Thank you sooo very much!

Shelby County Tennessee gardening asparagus vegetable gardening

1 Response

At this point, the foliage must be "dead", i.e. no longer green or actively growing. Go ahead and cut them down. I usually cut a bit higher than just an inch. It makes it easier to see where the new growth will resume, especially if you need to weed in early spring. As for compost, I would say about an inch. I would not go over three inches. Hope this helps.