"Pic-Of-The-Week" Irises by canesisters
TheEasyGarden - Gardening Forum
Easy - Fun - Fulfilling... How Gardening Should Be
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We get mushroom compost from a local garden center, but we are very close to a mushroom-producing area -- Kennett's Square PA. Mushroom compost is fabulous because it is sterilized twice over -- in the composting process as well as the sterilization done to prevent contaminants in the mushroom houses. No weed seeds. This is the second years we have used it and we wish we had found it before. We composted horse and chicken manure in the past and never quite got things hot enough to eliminate all weed seeds!
As to asparagus root planting, some older garden texts say to plant 6-8" deep as a starting point. I think the most critical issue is ground water levels. We killed off a bed that was planted deep during a very rainy spring season, so our newer bed was planted at ground level in a raised bed so it has 8" of soil above it. It is producing well!
I also have an overflow area between my herb bed and grapes. I had a few extra asparagus roots that I threw in and simply covered them with compost and mulch. They are also doing well. (Martha Washington FATTTTT sprouts that are delicious!!!) But, this is only third year for these roots and we have not had a severe winter in this time.
I think that if ground water levels are not an issue, depth protects from heat and extreme cold.