A picture of a Poor-Man's Asparagus

Poor-Man's Asparagus

Chenopodium bonus-henricus

Also known as

Good King Henry, Good-King-Henry

Full Sun
Easy care
Moderate watering
Tender

H1a

RHS hardiness

15°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

50cm

Max

50cm

30cm

Min

30cm

Flowering

  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has no fragrance

Poor-Man's Asparagus Overview

It is a perennial herb that grows between 40 and 80 cm in height. The leaves are fleshy, equal in length and height, triangular to diamond-shaped, with a slightly waxy, succulent texture. The flowers grow on leafless spikes and are very small and green. The seeds are small and reddish-green.

Common problems with Poor-Man's Asparagus

This plant is generally pest and disease free.

    How to harvest Poor-Man's Asparagus

    Leaves can be harvested all year round but is best in spring and early summer. The shoots are the most popular and can be cut when more or less 10cm in length. The small flowering buds can be removed after spring.

    How to propagate Poor-Man's Asparagus

    Seed

    Sow the seeds in spring. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of soil. They can take anywhere between 1 and 3 weeks to germinate, though germination is sporadic.

    Division

    Break the older, large plant mass into pieces and plant separately.

    Other uses of Poor-Man's Asparagus

    Medicinal

    The leaves, mashed into a pulp, has been used to cleanse and restore chronic sores, boils and abscesses.

    Edible

    Stems, young shoots and leaves can be eaten. Remove the parts from the plant and boil or steam till ready.