as·par·a·gus | \ə-ˈsper-ə-gəs, -ˈspa-rə-\
plural asparagus

Definition of asparagus 

: any of a genus (Asparagus) of Old World perennial plants of the lily family 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

The goats’ cheese in the tart accentuates the asparagus-like grassy flavors in the wine. Carole Kotkin, miamiherald, "Puff pastry can be used in countless sweet and savory ways," 12 July 2018 More: Healthy Table: Cauliflower is enjoying its time in the spotlight More: Healthy Table: Load up on asparagus for its healthy dose of folate and antioxidants Ripe mangoes will have a fruity aroma. Darlene Zimmerman, Detroit Free Press, "Mango gazpacho is a sweet spin on a classic summer soup," 17 June 2018 The best asparaguses are said to melt at the touch of the tongue. Washington Post, "AP PHOTOS: Asparagus dubbed ‘white gold’ harvested in Spain," 8 June 2018 Blackberries and pecans brought additional visual charm and welcome texture to the plate; same for white asparagus and nicely whipped sweet potatoes. Tim Smith,, "Food Market still draws crowds, delivers imaginative fare in Hampden," 31 May 2018 Chopped asparagus adds color and complements the flavor of the potatoes. Linda Giuca And Christopher Prosperi,, "Take On Tortilla Espanola Incorporates Local Asparagus," 18 May 2018 Snack on sweet treats (think lemon elderflower cake) and smoked salmon crostini and asparagus goat cheese tart. Hannah Steinkopf-frank, RedEye Chicago, "Where to celebrate the royal wedding in Chicago," 14 May 2018 The lemon risotto and asparagus were great accompaniments to the scallops, and the tarragon white wine sauce was a lovely addition to the chicken! Dave Eckert, kansascity, "It's time for spring menus at some Kansas City restaurants | The Kansas City Star," 26 Apr. 2018 The special was a pound of peel-and-eat shrimp, which came with a salad and a side dish such as baked potato or asparagus. Michael Bauer, San Francisco Chronicle, "Michael Bauer’s trip to Kansas: $17 main courses and homes for $75,000," 15 May 2018

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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Statistics for asparagus

Last Updated

15 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for asparagus

The first known use of asparagus was in 1543

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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 \

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 \

Medical Definition of asparagus 

1 capitalized : a genus of Old World perennial herbs of the lily family (Liliaceae) 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

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More from Merriam-Webster on asparagus

Spanish Central: Translation of asparagus

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

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one that holds something together

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