This heirloom variety dating back to the 19th century is prized in Europe for its delicious stems and bright, rosy buds that can be blanched white. ‘Precoce’ means ‘early’ in French (Argenteuil is the name of the town in France where it gained popularity), and this plant is early in a couple of ways. First, it is usually ready for harvest in two years rather than the typical three. Second, it’s one of the first asparagus varieties to emerge in the spring. If you are going to blanch this crop, you need to be ready with topsoil or a black tarp to keep the sunlight out as soon as the tips begin to emerge. Not only does this asparagus variety look pretty on a plate, but the sweet, mild, slightly nutty flavor is exquisite!
- Full sun (six to eight hours)
- Blanching – cover stalks with soil or a tarp as soon as tips emerge
- 6.0 to 6.5
- 3 to 8
- 12 to 18 inches apart
- 3 feet between rows
- Water deeply 1 inch a week; do not let soil completely dry out
- Light green spears with lilac tips (white with rosy tips when bleached)
- Light green foliage with green to white flowers
- Plant grows to 2 to 3 feet, spears 6 to 9 inches
- Produces male and female plants
- Gourmets consider it the top ‘white’ variety
Have you grown Precoce D’Argenteuil asparagus plants? Are they easy to tend and harvest? Please tell us about your experiences growing Precoce D’Argenteuil asparagus.