|Scientific Name:||Asparagus officinalis L.|
Asparagus caspius Hohen.
Asparagus longifolius Fisch. ex Steud.
Asparagus officinalis L. subsp. caspius (Hohen.) Asch. & Graebn.
Asparagus polyphyllus Steven ex Ledeb.
|Taxonomic Notes:||Asparagus officinalis L. is a primary wild relative of cultivated Asparagus (A. officinalis) (USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program 2013).|
|Red List Category & Criteria:||Least Concern ver 3.1|
|Assessor(s):||Kell, S.P., Rhodes, L. & Maxted, N.|
|Contributor(s):||Hargreaves , S., Vörösváry, G., Vögel, R., Collett, L., Eliáš, P. & Asdal, Å.|
Asparagus officinalis is globally assessed as Least Concern as it has a wide ranging global distribution, its population trend is thought to be stable and there are no major threats facing the species. It occurs in a wide variety of habitat types, and is conserved both in situ and ex situ. As identified by Kell (2011), the subspecies A. officinalis subsp. prostratus is Endangered in Great Britain; therefore, the subpopulations of this taxon require active management and monitoring.
|Range Description:||Asparagus officinalis is native to most of Europe, north Africa, and western Asia, also spreading to Mongolia, parts of China and Siberia. It has been introduced and become naturalized in some parts of Europe, across Australasia and parts of north and south America (USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program 2011).|
Kell (2011) summarized available knowledge of European distribution as follows:
Native:Afghanistan; Albania; Algeria; Armenia; Austria; Azerbaijan; Belarus; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; China (Xinjiang); Croatia; Czech Republic; Denmark; France (Corsica, France (mainland)); Georgia; Germany; Greece (Greece (mainland)); Hungary; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Ireland; Italy (Italy (mainland), Sicilia); Kazakhstan; Lebanon; Liechtenstein; Luxembourg; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Malta; Moldova; Mongolia; Montenegro; Morocco; Netherlands; Norway; Poland; Portugal (Portugal (mainland)); Romania; Russian Federation (Altay, Central Asian Russia, Chechnya, Dagestan, Eastern Asian Russia, European Russia, Ingushetiya, Kabardino-Balkariya, Karachaevo-Cherkessiya, Krasnodar, Krasnoyarsk, Severo-Osetiya, Stavropol, West Siberia); Serbia; Slovakia; Slovenia; Spain (Spain (mainland)); Sweden; Switzerland; Syrian Arab Republic; Tunisia; Turkey (Turkey-in-Europe); Ukraine (Krym, Ukraine (main part)); United Kingdom (Great Britain, Northern Ireland)
|Range Map:||Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.|
|Population:||This species is very widespread across Eurasia and the global population is thought to be stable. The European range of this species is also stable (Kell 2011). The same author summarizes available knowledge of European populations of this species as follows:|
|Current Population Trend:||Stable|
|Habitat and Ecology:||According to Kell (2011), in the Mediterranean, Asparagus officinalis is found in many habitats, from hedgerows and grassy habitats to scrub, wasteland and coastal areas (Blamey and Grey-Wilson 2004). In central Europe, it also occurs in steppe in warm regions. In Hungary, it grows in dry oak woodlands (Orno-Quercetum (pubescenti-cerris, Corno-Quercetum) karst scrub-forests, shrubs (Crataegetum danubiale), steppe woodlands (Campanolo-Stipetum tirsae), sand steppes (Brometum tectorum) and salt steppes (Achilleo-Festucetum pseudovinae) (Soó 1966, Simon 1992). It occurs in a range of soil types, but prefers calcareous soils, rich in nutrients and alkaline minerals (Soó 1966, Simon 1992).|
According to Preston et al. (2002), A. officinalis subsp. prostratus prefers lowland areas, occurring on free-draining sea-cliffs (where it grows through Festuca rubra in rocky soils) and sand dunes (commonly found alongside paths). Tutin et al. (1980) also noted that this taxon occurs on coastal sands and rocks. A. officinalis subsp. officinalis prefers free-draining sandy soils and lowlands (Preston et al. 2002).
|Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:||No|
|Use and Trade:||The species is collected for ornamental purposes (Kell 2011), has been used in traditional medicine and is widely cultivated as a vegetable (USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program 2014). Additionally wild Asparagus officinalis is a primary genetic relative of cultivated asparagus as so it has the potential for use as a gene donor for crop improvement (USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program 2014).|
There are currently no known threats to this species.
The genus Asparagus is listed in Annex I of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) which aims to guarantee sustainable agriculture and food security through the conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture, as well as ensuring the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of their use (FAO 2009).
Kell (2011) summarises knowledge of the national threat/protection status of this species in Europe as follows:
This species is also noted as present in at least 15 protected areas across Europe and Russia (Information Center for the Environment (ICE) 2013).
|Citation:||Kell, S.P., Rhodes, L. & Maxted, N. 2016. Asparagus officinalis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T176377A19392993.Downloaded on 23 January 2018.|
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