Parsley is one of the most popular herbs in the world. It is widely used for flavoring dishes as well as for decoration. Besides being tasty that adds an extremely remarkable flavor to any dish, it is also a highly attractive decoration due to its admirable green leaves. This post is dedicated to showing you how to grow parsley herb.
Parsley is a low maintenance herb that is easily grown and does not require much attention and care. It is a sturdy plant that is rich in vitamins which makes it anti pests. It rare that pests affect this adorable plant. Parsley is usually grown in gardens, but, it also grows perfectly in containers indoors.
Below you will find a detailed guide and instructions to show you how to grow parsley successfully, outdoors and indoors, in gardens or containers.
1. Choose an adequate variety.
There are three main varieties of parsley that you can grow. The first is Flat Leaf Parsley. This variety is distinguished with its extremely sweet flavor. It is a heat tolerant variety that grows taller than the other variety. The second variety is Curly Leaf Parsley. This variety is the most popular one for salads and garnishing. It smaller than the Flat Leaf Parsley and it is favored for its sweet soft flavor. The last variety is Hamburg Parsley. It is not a well-known variety. All parts of this variety from roots to leaves are edible.
2. Choose a spot
Whether you are planting this magnificent herb in pots or directly in your garden, you need to choose a sunny position. Parsley is a sturdy plant that can also grow in the partially shady position. If you live in a hot climate, it is advisable that you plant parsley between other garden plants to protect it from excessive heat. For growing parsley in pots, the best location is on one of your windowsills.
3. Preparing the soil
A good quality soil is one of the most important requirements for growing parsley. You should use a good quality potting mix that is rich in organic matter. The soil should also be loamy and well-draining. You could create the perfect potting soil by mixing 50% potting soil with 50% compost for nutrients or aged manure.
Ph soil should be neutral. Any levels that range between 6 and 7 are acceptable for parsley.
4. Planting time
Whether you are planting parsley in a garden or in a container indoors, the perfect time is spring. They need a cool weather to grow and thrive. Therefore, if you live in a hot area, start planting them in winter.
5. Propagating the seeds.
Before planting the seeds, you need to prepare them. They are known for their low germination rate. Their germination may take up to 6 weeks if not more. If you want to fasten the germination rate of parsley seeds, soak them in soap and hot water for an hour. Then empty the soaked water and add fresh clean hot water. Leave the seeds for 24 hours in the water.
Afterward, dry the seeds. When they totally dry you can start planting them. This should accelerate their germination rate.
You could choose to plant the seeds directly in your garden soil or in containers. Either way, poke 1/4 inch deep hole for each seed. Sow one single seed per hole and cover it lightly with soil. Leave a gap that is at least 10 inches in all directions.
For planting parsley in containers, you should use a large container since it is going to be a permanent container. Parsley does not like transplanting. The shock of transplanting may hinder the growth of your plant. A 12 inch deep and wide container is perfect to grow one parsley.
After planting, water the soil thoroughly and mulch around. Mulching will help the soil to retain moisture as well as prevents weeds from spreading around your plant.
Parsley likes slightly moist soil thus regular watering is required. You should neither let the soil dry not waterlogged it. Therefore, careful watering is needed. If you are growing parsley in containers, you should delegate the watering task to these splendid self-watering containers. They will provide your plants with the amount of water they require.
Fertilizing depends on your soil quality. If you think your soil is poor you could apply a half-strength balanced liquid fertilizer. However, if you have a good quality soil, you could ameliorate your plant’s growth by adding aged manure or compost.
Pruning is not essential for parsley to grow but it is recommended for maximum growth. Removing the dead leaves will keep your plant in attractive shape. You should also prune flower stalks because they may promote foliage growth.
10. Pests and diseases.
The most dangerous disease is root rot. This disease is avoidable if you water your plants carefully. Avoid excessive watering is an excellent idea to avoid this diseases. Other diseases may include Leaf spot. There are many pests that can affect this lovely herb such as parsley worm, aphids, mites, and cutworm.
Usually, parsley herb is ready to be harvested in 2 to 3 months. After 3 months from planting, you can pick parsley leaves anytime you wish to. Parsley stems are edible too. You could cut the whole stem instead of just picking leaves. If you wish detailed instructions for harvesting parsley, follow this link.
Parsley is not the only decorative edible herb. There are many other herbs that you can grow easily to decorate your kitchen and flavor your dishes. Among these herbs, the most popular are Curry leaf, Fenugreek, and betel leaf. For an extended list of the best herbs to grow indoors, you are advised to read this article.
Enjoy eating your parsley, we are pleased that we have helped you.