Now Sowing: Parsley (Sep~Jan)

Parsley seeds in the catalog, opens a new window

Common Name:  Parsley (Petroselinum crispum)

Seed Saving Level: Advanced

Planting: Parsley enjoys cool temperatures and moist soil. Parsley can tolerate cold temps if mulched. Parsley doesn't like extreme heat and will slow down int he summer. However, it does like to be planted in full sun. Italian parsley seeds should be soaked before sowing.

Harvesting:  Regular cuttings will provide you with a healthy plant and great parsley all season long. Harvest in the morning when plants have cooled and morning dew has dried. Parsley can be used fresh or dried. To dry, hang upside down out of direct light.

Seed Saving: Perfect flowers are borne in umbels and they tend to shatter. As the umbels brown and the seeds near maturity, place a paper bag over a head, typing it at the base, allowing shattered seeds to fall into the bag. After a couple weeks, snip the umbels off the plant, leaving them in the bag. Allow them to dry completely and then shake bag to remove more seeds or rub the umbels. Winnow to clean.

Sources: Power Plants: Simple Home Remedies You Can Grow (2014) by Frankie Flowers and Bryce Wild, Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners (2002) by  Suzanne Ashworth, Complete Guide to Saving Seeds (2011) by Robert Gough and Cheryl Moore-Gough.

Books and ebooks:

Recipe: Winter Beans with Thyme, Marjoram, and Parsley


  • 1 cup cannellini beans
  • 1 cup pinto beans
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, halved and sliced
  • 1 fat garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 ¾ cups fresh or canned tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tbsp minced fresh marjoram
  • 4 tbsp minced fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • Salt, freshly ground black pepper


Heat the oil in a large saucepan and gently fry the onion for 10 minutes, until softened. Stir in the garlic and fry for 1 minute longer. Add the tomatoes, thyme, marjoram, and 1 tablespoon of the parsley. Stir well and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for   5 to 10 minutes longer, until the beans are heated through. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining parsley. Serve immediately.

Any beans can be used. Serve as an accompaniment to meat or poultry dishes or with boiled rice and crusty bread for a complete vegetarian meal. Serves  4.

Source: A Pinch of Herbs: Herbs for Health, Beauty and Cooking (1997) by Katy Holder & Gail Duff.