Learning how to take care of a parsley plant is the first step for many in their journey with herbs. It is an easy herb to grow as well. Check out this recommended reading for more detailed herb information.
Parsley stems are more flavorsome than the actual leaf.
Parsley is a biennial herb. This means during the first year it establishes itself and produces flavorsome leaves. Then during the second year, it begins to seed and die off.
How To Take Care Of A Parsley Plant
What you will need
- Fertilizer 5-10-5 (optional)
- Soil mix (optional)
- Pots, 10 inches in size (optional)
- Manure compost (optional)
Pot Vs Open Soil
Parsley grows well in rich well drained soil. This soil can be from a potting mix or just soil from your yard. If you use yard soil it is best to mix with compost. This herb can be grown both in pots and garden beds.
Growing In Open Soil
In an open soil configuration, plants will grow better in general as there is no restriction on their roots. But if you wish to move a plant there will be serious damage to its roots.
Growing In Pots
Pots on the other hand are quite convenient when you want to move them. Also, it is a nice addition to the home. But bear in mind the plant will just be limited in size their soil for the entirety of their life (unless planted).
How To Grow In Pots
To be grown in a pot it needs to be well drained and big enough to support the roots. About 10 inches (25cm) wide and deep will give the best results. Fertilizing is more important in pots as plants are limited to the same small amount of soil. This soil can run out of nutrients.
To speed the lengthy germination time of parsley you can soak your seeds in water for 24 hours. After this time plant your seeds as normal and you will see germination quicken.
Simply spread seeds over a moist paper towel. Fold paper towel a few times over the seeds. Place the paper towel of seeds in a zip lock bag and lock the bag shut.
Plant the now germinated seeds about a 1-2 inches (3-5cm) apart and 1/4inch (6mm) seed depth.
Once the seedling has begun the grow 2 inches (5cm) high spread the plants out about 1 foot (30cm) apart. This is to thin the herbs out to give them room to grow.
It is completely optional to fertilize your herbs but there are benefits to it. The best type of fertilizer for herbs is the 5-10-5 mix. Parsley enjoys a well fertilized soil. First, fertilize when planted and then weekly until a height of 10inch (25cm) is reached. After this height is reached you can fertilize less frequently.
Which Type Of Parsley Should I Grow?
The two common options for which parsley to grow are Flat leaf (Italian parsley) and curly leaf. The how to take care of a parsley plant guide will work for both flat leaf and curly leaf.
- Recognizable flat leafs
- Strong flavor
- Useful in various types of cooking
- Dense looking curly leafs
- Mild bitter taste
- Used more for decoration due to taste
What conditions does Parsley require?
Parsley likes to be watered regularly to ensure good growth. The best way to check how much to water is to look at the soil. It is best to have damp soil. Dry soil will stump growth and too much water will make plant roots rot.
Depending on where you live, keeping the soil damp could be every second day of watering to once a week. You need to judge it.
Flat leaf prefers to be in full sunlight. Curly leaf on the other hand enjoys part sun throughout the day with 4 hours of the sun being optimum.
When And How To Harvest Parsley
Take cuttings of the herb when the plant reaches about 6 inches (15cm) in height. This is because the plant is growing vigorously and can continue to grow. It is important to take cuttings from the outside of the plant as new growth tends to be in the center. Cuttings should be made toward the bottom of the stalk.
Now you know how to take care of a parsley plant.
For more Herb information check out the recommended reading here.
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