as·​par·​a·​gus | \ ə-ˈsper-ə-gəs How to pronounce asparagus (audio) , -ˈspa-rə- \
plural asparagus

Definition of asparagus

: any of a genus (Asparagus of the family Asparagaceae, the asparagus family) of Old World perennial plants having much-branched stems, minute scalelike leaves, and narrow usually filiform branchlets that function as leaves especially : one (A. officinalis) widely cultivated for its edible young shoots

Illustration of asparagus

Illustration of asparagus

Examples of asparagus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Chef Miguel Laffan, who held a Michelin star at a previous restaurant, recently signed on as a consultant, and the menu has artful renditions of classic Alentejo dishes, like roast-duck pastries and black pork with cornbread and asparagus. Ann Abel, Forbes, 28 June 2021 Eagan's Mason Jar Kitchen also has a grill kit, with ready-to-grill prime rib-eye steaks and buttered fresh asparagus, cheesy au gratin potatoes, beef au jus and chopped fresh herbs and seasonings. Nicole Hvidsten, Star Tribune, 17 June 2021 That likely means a heavy selection of Allen Brothers steaks as well as seafood towers and sides like mac and cheese and grilled asparagus. Sarah Blaskovich, Dallas News, 13 Apr. 2021 That can include the leaves (lettuce), stem (asparagus), roots (carrots), tubers (potatoes), bulbs (onions), or flowers (artichokes). Zee Krstic And Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, 23 June 2021 Check doneness by squeezing between your thumb and forefinger: asparagus or okra should be gently yielding. New York Times, 15 June 2021 This variation showcases broccoli florets, green peas, sugar snaps, and asparagus., 15 June 2021 Summery seafood offerings include sashimi, charred fillets of horse mackerel wrapped around asparagus, and an exceptionally buttery scallop risotto, served appealingly on the pearly half shell. Hannah Goldfield, The New Yorker, 4 June 2021 Then, asparagus will return each spring for 20 years. Beth Dooley Special To The Star Tribune, Star Tribune, 26 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'asparagus.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of asparagus

1543, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for asparagus

New Latin, genus name, from Latin, asparagus plant, from Greek asparagos; perhaps akin to Greek spargan to swell

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Time Traveler for asparagus

Time Traveler

The first known use of asparagus was in 1543

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Last Updated

13 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Asparagus.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for asparagus



English Language Learners Definition of asparagus

: a plant with long green stems and tiny leaves at one end that is cooked and eaten as a vegetable


as·​par·​a·​gus | \ ə-ˈsper-ə-gəs How to pronounce asparagus (audio) \

Kids Definition of asparagus

: a vegetable that is the young shoots of a garden plant related to the lilies that lives for many years


as·​par·​a·​gus | \ ə-ˈspar-ə-gəs How to pronounce asparagus (audio) \

Medical Definition of asparagus

1 capitalized : a genus of Old World perennial herbs (family Asparagaceae) having erect much-branched stems, minute scalelike leaves, and narrow filiform branchlets that function as leaves
2a : any plant of the genus Asparagus especially : a plant (A. officinalis) widely cultivated for its tender edible young shoots
b : the root of cultivated asparagus formerly used as a diuretic

More from Merriam-Webster on asparagus

Nglish: Translation of asparagus for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about asparagus


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