1. (Science: botany) a genus of perennial plants belonging to the natural order liliaceae, and having erect much branched stems, and very slender branchlets which are sometimes mistaken for leaves. Asparagus racemosus is a shrubby climbing plant with fragrant flowers. Specifically: The asparagus officinalis, a species cultivated in gardens.
2. The young and tender shoots of a. Officinalis, which form a valuable and well-known article of food.
this word was formerly pronounced sparrowgrass; but this pronunciation is now confined exclusively to uneducated people.
(Science: zoology) asparagus beetle, a small beetle (Crioceris asparagi) injurious to asparagus.
Origin: L, fr. Gr,; cf. To swell with sap or juice, and Zend paregha prong, sprout, Pers. Asparag, lith. Spurgas sprout, Skr. Sphurj to swell. Perh. The greek borrowed from the persian. Cf. Sparrowgrass.