Parsley is a versatile herb that can be used in many dishes. It is a wonderful herb that tastes great in salads or as a garnish. Learning to plant, grow, and harvest parsley is a great way to be sustainable and to enjoy this fresh herb directly from your garden.
Planting and Growing Parsley
Parsley is so easy to grow, but it has many health benefits too. The benefits include calming digestion and reducing blood pressure. It can be used to help regulate menstruation as well as treat respiratory and circulatory issues. It’s rich in vitamins A and C, with high levels of iron too!
Growing Parsley From Seed
Parsley is a biennial plant, so this plant needs two years to get to maturity. Planting parsley in the garden requires nutrient-rich soil, by fertilizing with compost or manure. Also, be sure to rake out any weeds from the garden beds.
Sow parsley seeds about an inch deep every two weeks. Succession planting allows plenty of parsley to grow well in your garden bed, with plenty of parsley to harvest.
Seeds take about 10-28 days to germinate. Make sure your plants are in a full-sun location and that seeds remain moist until they sprout.
Does parsley need full sun or shade?
It depends on what type of parsley you are growing. Parsley needs at least six hours of sunlight per day. However, you can also grow it in a partly shaded area if your garden has too much competition for space and light.
Italian flat-leaf variety really does like full sun and can even be a bit intolerant of shade in hotter climates.
Curly parsley is particularly susceptible to scorching in hot weather and should be grown where it will get good air circulation and protection.
This plant enjoys nutrient-rich, well-drained soil. Add compost to your soil if it lacks nutrients. Be sure to water frequently as parsley does not like to get too dry. One way to conserve moisture is by mulching your parsley plants.
In the winter, cover them with a foot of mulch to help keep the soil from freezing and thawing which could kill your plants.
The following spring, thin out any overcrowded seedlings by removing those that are too close together or potting up excess parsley for later use in containers on your patio or deck.
How do I keep watering my parsley after it has gone to seed?
Parsley goes through two growth cycles, the first one being green leaves followed by flowers that eventually go to seed. During this second cycle, you should stop watering so as not to wash away the seeds.
Common Pests and Diseases
Stem rot and leaf spots are the two most common diseases that affect parsley. Be sure that your plants are receiving enough air circulation as to keep fungus from forming or sitting water from creating rot on your plants.
Parsley also suffers from carrot flies and celery fly larvae. To keep pests at bay, companion planting with alliums (the onion family) can help repel pests. You can also use non-toxic insecticides like neem oil to keep pests at bay.
Growing Parsley in Containers
If you live in an area that doesn’t get enough sunlight, you can grow parsley indoors. If you don’t have enough garden space, you can also choose to plant in containers.
Does parsley grow well in pots?
Parsley grows best when planted using a potting mix with organic material and rich, fertile soil to promote strong root growth. Keep the soil moist at all times but not soggy; overwatering can lead to wilted leaves and mold on the surface of the soil and drowning roots.
The container needs plenty of room for aeration. Create air holes near its drainage system so it doesn’t become waterlogged from too much moisture.
Why is my potted parsley turning yellow?
If my parsley is wilting or yellowing after a few days in water, it’s likely that it might not have enough nutrients available. Its roots may not be properly hydrated by the potting mix, or there may be mold present on the surface of the soil.
Why does my potted parsley keep dying?
If your plant has been stunted from lack of sunlight or airflow for an extended period of time, you will need to replant with fresh soil. Add grow lights without delay or place in a sunny location so as to allow for maximum photosynthesis before these conditions worsen further.
It could also be that they’re just suffering from overwatering. Make sure you don’t let any roots stay submerged in water for more than an hour or two.
How to Harvest Parsley
When harvesting parsley, it’s important to cut the outward growing leaves and stems and not at its center point as this will prevent new growth from forming on either side of the stem. Instead, pull off individual leaves or snip with a pair of scissors by cutting just below a leaf joint.
One of the most common ways people use parsley in food preparation, by chopping and adding them raw or cooked into salads or other dishes.
This cooking breaks down some of their nutrients but does allow them to keep their flavor intact. To make sure that cuts stay fresh-looking and attractive, chop off only the tops of the leaves and stems, leaving them intact.
Will parsley grow back after cutting?
Parsley will regrow if it is cut with a sharp instrument, such as scissors. This allows for the stems to regenerate more leaves because they are broken (but not too deeply) at certain points along the stem.
In general, you can harvest about three times before having to replant your parsley plant.
Parsley is an easy plant to grow and can be planted in almost any kind of soil without too much hassle. It’s also low maintenance and easy to grow, which makes this an excellent choice for the beginning gardener or someone looking for a new hobby! With just a little knowledge about how parsley grows, you will have no problem harvesting your own fresh herbs in no time at all.
This great article was written by Living With My Allergies. Be sure to check out their other blog posts for more helpful healthy living tips!
WANT MORE HERB-GROWING GUIDES?
- How to Grow and Harvest Basil
- Growing and Harvesting Thyme
- Planting, Growing and Harvesting Chives
- Planting and Growing Lavender
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