I received a message today from someone who has seen similar symptoms on asparagus to those in my last post. The caller believes that the wilting symptoms could possibly be due to frost. What an excellent observation! It is so easy to forget about frost damage when you visit a farm when it is 80 degrees and sunny out. But, we have had some cold evenings and mornings in the last week or so.
Description of Frost Damage in Asparagus
Spears appear slightly darker green, water-soaked and break off easily. Soft-rotting bacteria can enter the damaged tissue. New spears take several more days to emerge. Temperatures below 33 degrees Fahrenheit may damage the spears.
Though the symptoms I presented in my last post don't exemplify frost damage exactly, I think that having such cold temperatures and wet weather combined didn't help out this particular planting.
Thank you so much for calls and comments. Please leave comments on the blog if you have something useful to add!