any plant of the genus Asparagus, of the lily family, especially A. officianalis, cultivated for its edible shoots.
the shoots, eaten as a vegetable.

before 1000; < Latin < Greek asp(h)áragos; replacing Old English sparagi (< Medieval Latin) and later sperage, sparrowgrass

asparaginous [as-puh-raj-uh-nuhs] , adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
asparagus (əˈspærəɡəs)
1.  any Eurasian liliaceous plant of the genus Asparagus, esp the widely cultivated A. officinalis, having small scaly or needle-like leaves
2.  the succulent young shoots of A. officinalis, which may be cooked and eaten
3.  asparagus fern a fernlike species of asparagus, A. plumosus, native to southern Africa
[C15: from Latin, from Greek asparagos, of obscure origin]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

late O.E. sparage, from M.L. sparagus, from L. asparagus, Gk. asparagos, probably from PIE base *sp(h)er(e)g- "to spring up" (though perhaps from a non-Gk. source). Respelled c.1600 to conform with classical Latin. Sparrowgrass is 17c. folk etymology, persisting into 19c., during which time asparagus
had "an air of stiffness and pedantry" [John Walker, "Critical Pronouncing Dictionary," 1791].
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
She was curious whether, after eating asparagus, they could smell it when they
Giant white asparagus tied with string on a silver platter lie below vases
  filled with spectacular flower arrangements.
Caviar, asparagus, and slices of strawberry are arranged artfully on a plate.
The next delightful green vegetable is wild asparagus, delicious and tender,
  found around fence posts where birds drop the seed.
Images for Asparagus
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