A popular perennial vegetable, asparagus rewards you with tender, nutritious spears for years and years. One of the first vegetable crops to harvest in the spring, asparagus spears are excellent for steaming, roasting, grilling and sautéing. Because asparagus is a long-lived perennial vegetable, take care in site selection and preparation. Asparagus performs best in full sun (six or more hours of direct sunlight daily) and in well-drained, sandy soil. The asparagus bed should be prepared in the fall, and asparagus crowns are planted in the spring. When selecting the best asparagus varieties to buy online, choose from high-yielding male hybrid asparagus and beloved heirloom asparagus varieties.