Growth Creation and Management

Asparagus grows very fast, yet it is nearly useless.

So are many Silicon Valley start-ups.

Asparagus grows explosively, upward of six inches in a 24-hour period. Some farmers harvest it after only a few hours and rarely wait a week. For farmers it is a great crop. Rapid growth leads to a quick profit, though a small one because there are a lot of competing farmers and not all that much demand for asparagus compared with other crops.

Nutritionally, though, asparagus is of limited value. It has only a trace amount of protein, even less fiber, and less than 1 percent of the minimum daily needs for many vitamins. Despite its ability to grow rapidly, a person might starve on a diet of asparagus and probably ...

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