- More flavoursome than its curly cousin!
- Very versatile and popular herb
- Great for companion planting, particularly beneficial to tomatoes
Parsley is a biennial herb (i.e. it will flower and produce seeds in its second year), widely grown for its leaves.
Sow: indoors from March or outdoors from late April/early May, once frosts have past and the soil has warmed up, in well prepared and fertile soil. Parsley enjoys full sun, although it will tolerate partial shade. Be patient! Parsley seeds require heat to germinate and, for this reason, germination can take several weeks. Harden off indoor grown seedlings before planting out, around 10cm apart. Parsley can also be grown successfully in a pot on the patio. Select a container with good drainage, and scatter several seeds on the surface, covering lightly with compost. Finally, parsley can also be grown on as an indoor plant on a sunny window sill, although plants grown indoors are unlikely to be as productive as those grown outdoor.
Aftercare: Once established, parsley is easy to look after. It will benefit from an organic liquid fertiliser every 2-4 weeks and regular watering. When the plant produces flower stems, either cut these out to encourage the plant to continue leaf growth, or allow flowers and, subsequently seeds, to form and encourage the plant to self-propagate.
Harvest: Snip off the outer stems on a regular basis to promote more growth.
Parsley is one of the most frequently used and versatile herbs in the kitchen. As well as being king of the garnishes, it also makes a regular appearance in fish dishes and adds flavour to salads, dressings, and, of course, butters.
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