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You might have noticed pronounced humps in the local fields shrouded beneath acres of plastic. What’s growing under there?

In many places, all that undercover activity will result in this year’s spring harvest of one of Germany’s favorite veggies, asparagus. Protecting the harvest from the rays of the sun results in a crop of the highly prized white asparagus, welcomed with great fanfare from mid- to late April through June 24, St. Johannis Day. Restaurants feature asparagus as part of their seasonal offerings, and many communities host festivals centered on the tasty spears. If you’re looking for a chance to see what all the fuss is about, here are some events to put on your calendar:

• A new asparagus-themed walk and culinary event is planned for April 29, between Bürstädt and Lampertheim, Germany, about 12 miles north of Mannheim. This Sunday outing with the theme “Asparagus-Wine-Culture” will offer 18 tasting stations of food and drink along a route that stretches about three miles. Dessert? Fresh strawberries!

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• Schwetzingen will hold its annual asparagus-themed event from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on May 5 with a long stretch of Mannheimer Strasse given over to stands offering this vegetable fit for a king. See

• If you’d prefer to skip the festivities in favor of a good meal, a couple of seasonally operated restaurants will cater to your wishes. The Böser Spargelrestaurant ( in Forst/Baden, 12 miles north of Karlsruhe, offers an extensive asparagus-themed menu, as does Farmer Lipp ( in Weiterstadt, just northwest of Darmstadt. But hurry — as of June 24, the season ends, and both establishments will close for another year.


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