Asparagus is a long-lived perennial vegetable that produces tenders spears for years and years. Harvested in late spring, it's a favorite among vegetable gardeners. Several varieties of asparagus seeds, plants and crowns are available for sale, including heirloom asparagus varieties and all-male hybrids. If you want to grow the highest yields, then all-male asparagus hybrids are usually the best option. Asparagus grows best in full sun (at least six hours of direct sunlight daily) and well-drained, sandy soil. You can improve your soil by mixing compost into it. Most gardeners plant asparagus crowns in the spring. For best results, prepare your asparagus bed in the fall before springtime planting.