I want to relocate my five year old asparagus patch. I have read that it's best to move them in early spring and then not to harvest the first year. Is this correct?
You will have the greatest success moving the asparagus in early spring. Spring transplanting is less stressful on the plants and easier on you. You should wait at least a year for the plants to become established before harvesting. If necessary, you can move the plants at a less-than-ideal time. Your chance of success decreases and your post transplant care increases at other times. I once transplanted a 2 year old planting of asparagus in mid June. It was a lot of work but with proper watering I was successful. If space and your budget allows you may want to purchase new plants for the new bed. That way you can harvest the asparagus from the existing planting while the new plants become established. In a couple years when the new bed is ready to harvest you could either eliminate the old bed or move the older plants into the new bed.