Parsley (Petroselinum crispum) is a biennial herb that most gardeners grow as an annual. It is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture zones 4-9. Grow parsley by planting cuttings or young seedlings because seed germination is very slow. The plants prefer partial shade and moist, well-drained soils. Parsley is high in vitamin A and C and is an excellent source of iron, making it a healthful addition to your home herb garden.
Cut the parsley stem from the parent plant. Make sure the cutting has approximately 3 to 4 inches of stem and healthy leaves at the top. Immediately place the cutting in a cup of cool water.
Mix together equal parts of sand, peat moss and perlite.
Fill a shallow planter or tray with 4 to 5 inches of the potting mixture.
Remove the cutting from the water and place the cut stem an inch into the potting mixture. Gently pack the mixture around the base of the cutting.
Water with 1 to 2 inches of water or enough to keep the soil moist but not soaking. Water the plants every few days to keep the soil moist.
Place the planter or tray in bright, indirect light. Check the cutting for roots after two weeks by gently brushing the soil at the base of the plant.
Prepare your garden bed by mixing in 2 to 3 inches of organic compost to the top 6 inches of soil. Use a tiller or hoe to mix in the compost and loosen the soil. Choose a well-drained location that receives at least six hours of sunlight per day.
Remove the new plant from the potting mix and dig a hole in your garden the same width and depth as the roots of the plant. Place the parsley into the hole, then fill in the hole with native soil from the garden. Gently pack the soil around the base of the plant with your hand or a trowel.
Plant the parsley 6 to 10 inches apart. Water the plants every two to three days with an inch of water throughout the growing season.
Harvest the parsley by cutting off the leaves with a sharp pair of scissors as you need them.
- West Virginia University Extension Service: Growing Herbs in the Home Garden
- University of Florida IFAS Extension; Herbs in the Florida Garden; James M. Stephens; March 1994
- North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service; Growing Herbs for the Home Gardener; Erv Evans, et al.; February 1998
- National Gardening Association: Growing Parsley