Why a late asparagus season could be beneficial for farmers - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Why a late asparagus season could be beneficial for farmers

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PASCO, WA - Asparagus season has just started. A cold and wet winter may have slowed things down this year, but the late start could work to the advantage of Washington growers. Reporter Stefani Zenteno talked to a local farmer and learned why the late harvest could benefit them.

Asparagus harvest season is underway for farmers in Washington, and although the season may have started late, local farmer Gary Larsen says it actually worked in their favor.

"The asparagus season was really slow because of the cold weather," Larsen said. "But it's been little bit of a benefit for us because if we would of gotten started early, we would have been butting heads with Mexico and their production, so right now they are finishing up and we are getting started so it should be a benefit for us."

Larsen says they haven't seen any damages from the severe winter we've had.

"That doesn't mean it's not going to show up, you know, but so far the quality looks really good," said Larsen. "It's coming out of the ground really good. Now we just need some consistent warm weather."

It is estimated this year for the season to end around June 10th. Max Uriostegui with County Mercantile says this vegetable is popular is their stores.

"More popular than what I thought," Uriostegui said. "I used to cut asparagus and I used to eat asparagus once in a while, but in here our customers buy boxes. You can deep fry it so there's many uses."

According to the Washington Asparagus Commission, last year growers harvested 21 million pounds of asparagus in Pasco.