The nutritional benefits of vegetables. Everything you need to know about vegetables, health and nutrition
Asparagus officinalis in the family Smilacaceae
The asparagus was cultivated and used in the Mediterranean from Egypt and Asia minor 2000 years ago, as well as in Spain. The name asparagus comes from the Greek and Romans as early as 200 BC knew him very well, so Cato cited in his ‘ De ‘ agriculture and Pliny and Columella it illustrated the technique of cultivation.
By the 15th century it began growing in France and, in the 16th century, came at the height of popularity in England.
In particular, in France a great impetus to the cultivation occurred during the reign of Louis XIV (1643-1715), the Sun King, who had a fondness for asparagus.
The different varieties and seasons
In Italy the asparagus are cultivated mainly in Veneto, Emilia Romagna, Piemonte, Puglia, Campania, Lazio.
Is a dioecious species, i.e. male and female flowers on different plants: fruits (obviously only by female plants) are small red berries containing black seeds. The plant is equipped with rhizomes, modified stems that grow under the ground forming a lattice said paw; they spread out the shoots, which is the edible part of the plant. It prefers fertile and alluvial soils, drainage. The leaves of this plant are minute and ramified.
We can distinguish several types, among them the green asparagus has become in recent years, the most cultivated in Italy:
• Green asparagus, with shoots that grow out of the ground, bringing to fruition the natural process of photosynthesis;
• white asparagus grown in the shelter of air and light, with a delicate flavour. Their cultivation requires careful land development, which must form filled in the file and, currently, is the use of black mulch sheeting, that collection must be removed and then repositioned. Very famous the asparago bianco di Cimadolmo;
• Purple asparagus, with the apex of the shoot that turns from pink to purple when it escapes from the soil. Are cultivated as green asparagus. Very famous violet asparagus of Albenga.
In Italy the culture has a certain historical tradition, so much so that between DOP and IGP include the Asparago bianco di Cimadolmo, Asparago bianco di Bassano and green asparagus for a Tiny while fourth product, asparagus Badoere, is the procedure of recognition.
The cultivation of asparagus is poliennale (normally lasts fifteen years including twelve in production) and normally is done by putting in place the legs. During the first and second year of life the plant is not productive and necesstita of many cultural care for its development. From the third year of life will begin to collect the shoots: starting in March and for sixty days gather scalarmente all the shoots that emerge from the ground. After the harvest, the shoots are allowed to develop freely to form a growing much expanded. During this phase the reserve substances accumulate in the roots and ensure the production the following year.
In different parts of Italy are also wild asparagus, which are collected in early spring and highly prized for the intense flavor.
The advice of Nutritionist
Asparagus is also named «broom» bowel because it contains delicate fibres very effective to stimulate and regulate the intestinal transit.
Is particularly rich in vitamin B9, necessary for the production and cell renewal. Very low in sodium, has traditionally recognized natural diuretic properties and it is said that even the urine scents.
Green asparagus is much richer in vitamin c.