When we were in Germany last year at this time (thank you volcano!) we noticed roadside stands selling Spargel!
It is a very BIG thing there at this time of the year. The stands were very busy, VERY!
According to Wikipedia,
"Spargel is the German name for asparagus. Most asparagus in Germany is white, as it is grown covered in soil (hilling) to prevent photosynthesis. This prevents the asparagus turning green and results in a taste a little sweeter and much more tender. It must be peeled before consumption. Spargel is generally harvested from late April to early June. Some green asparagus is available in Germany, but would most likely be called grüner Spargel.
Asparagus is very popular in the Netherlands, France, Belgium and Germany. In Germany it is known as "Königliches Gemüse" (Royal Vegetable). Germany produces 82,000 tons of asparagus a year; however, that is only enough to meet 61% of consumption. Many German cities hold festivals celebrating its harvest. Schwetzingen claims to be the "Asparagus Capital of the World" and holds an annual Spargelfest (asparagus festival) in which an Asparagus Queen is crowned.During Spargelsaison or Spargelzeit (asparagus season), asparagus is sold at many roadside stands and in open air markets: about half of all asparagus is bought in this way. It is also popular in restaurants, and fresh asparagus is advertised outside many restaurants during the season."
And now you know!