The crates are filled with cold water to keep the asparagus at peak freshness. Even with modern equipment, an acre of asparagus may only produce 2 tons of the vegetable per year – a v… Spargelsaison in Germany begins in April and ends abruptly on June 24 (Midsummer Day). Lukas, a Polish farmhand, harvests white asparagus at Hof Grothues Potthoff. Every good restaurant always sells a few white asparagus dishes. Every April, he leaves his wife and job in PoznaÅ, Poland, to work 10 hours a day, six days a week, until the official end of the season on June 24, the Feast Day of St. John the Baptist. In the café, cheeses are served with beers from one of Münsterâs craft breweries. Picking up a flat trowel, he smoothes over evidence of his operation. The cityâs weekly market, a maze of trucks and stands shaded by colorful awnings, takes place in a large, leafy square by the cathedral. With the hand on heart, Germans cannot live without asparagus (or spargel in German)! Depending on the weather, the season for asparagus begins some time in April and lasts until St. John the Baptist’s feast day June 24, and for those weeks the country is gripped by ‘Asparagus Fever’. âOr they might order chicken stew. And like Elmar Grothues, Horstmöller fosters strong local relationships; heâs been buying his asparagus from the same farm for more than 20 years. White asparagus sold from the farm in Germany The German asparagus season is short, running from mid-April (depending on temperatures), until the … âNot at all,â Grothues admits, rather sheepishly, âIt all tastes the same. The annual harvesting of Germany’s “king of vegetables” begins in April and finishes on the 24 June, … https://www.nationalgeographic.com/travel/destinations/europe/germany/munsterland-white-asparagus-food.html. Today, the market is still shunned by some localsâthose who prefer to buy their white asparagus from the source. We arrive at the farmyard just as Dominikowski and his co-workers are hoisting crates containing the morningâs harvest off their truck and into a barn. The hype about the coveted white vegetable starts up again in Germany at the end of April. The terraced restaurant serves an excellent breakfast as well as the farmâs own white asparagus in season. © 1996-2015 National Geographic Society, © 2015- Calling all foodies: Germany's 'white gold' season is in full swing The precise art of growing asparagus. You can usually spot the first bundles white asparagus (Spargel) at German farmers’ markets in the middle of March, but at staggeringly high prices, since the season is yet to officially begin. Asparagus Season in Germany. Seasonal farms: Both Hof Lütke Laxen and Spargelhof Hengemann are open to serve meals during harvest season. The annual asparagus harvest is a source of great local pride, and I find only one vendor indifferent to it: âI grew up with two white asparagus addicts for parents,â she says. In 2017, many thousands of workers — mainly from Romania and Poland — cut some 129,600 tons of white asparagus in Germany during the short season. Itâs hardly surprising Dominikowski has an eye for spotting white asparagus: the 33-year-old has traveled to Hof Grothues-Potthoff, a farm estate with a bakery, farm shop, and hotel, in Senden, Germanyâabout 10 miles southwest of Münsterâfor the past eight years, to help harvest and sort up to a hundred tons of Germanyâs white gold. 3. White asparagus is no different than regular asparagus, expect that it is grown underground in little mounds. All rights reserved. With a total value of 175 million euros, the slender stalks have become Germany’s most important cultivated product over the years. Germany has the best spargel festivals ever, offering spargel queen and king awards, the fastest spargel peeler contests, many white asparagus dishes, and live music. No other vegetable gets as much dedicated land as the “white gold.” A small asparagus production operation requires a minimum of 5 square acres of suitable soil for an asparagus crop. 2. In ancient times, asparagus has been cherished for its delicate flavor and originally cultivated by ancient Romans, Greeks, and Egyptians. White asparagus season is celebrated with a passion in Germany. âItâs satisfying, and the moneyâs much better than repairing computers back home,â he says. While the green asparagus grows year-round, the white asparagus season only lasts 8 weeks, from April 22 to June 25. It requires precision planting and constant monitoring of the soil thatâs heaped over the spears to prevent them being exposed to sunlight: if itâs too hot, too cold, too wet, dry or hard, the growth of the spears is affected. 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