KSU TARIM VE DOGA DERGISI-KSU JOURNAL OF AGRICULTURE AND NATURE, vol.23, no.3, pp.568-576, 2020 (ESCI)
The objective of this study was to determine the effect of harvest time and the age at first harvest after transplanting (2 and 3 years old) on asparagus yield and spear quality. For this purpose, UC 157 F-1 variety asparagus seedlings were transplanted in the field in 2011 and 2012. Harvesting started in 2014 when the plants were 2 or 3 years old and half of the asparagus plants were harvested in the spring while the other half in the summer. Plant age significantly affected the spear yield and spear thickness with younger plants producing fewer spears. In addition, harvest time also had a significant effect on the number of spears per plant harvested and spear quality. Harvesting asparagus in the spring resulted in higher number of spears per plant and thicker spears. Harvesting in the spring also caused fewer number of spears per plant having a thickness of 8-12 mm but resulted in more spears having a diameter of 12-16 mm or thicker than 16 mm in comparison with summer harvest. All these results clearly indicated that harvesting could begin in the second year without any significant long-term effect on spear yield and quality. Moreover, considering the spear yield and quality, summer harvests could be an alternative to spring harvests only if the market prices are higher.