Common parsley, Petroselinium crispum, a member of the carrot family (Apiaceae) I never grew parsley as a biannual before. But this year the parsley came back and took off on it’s mission to reproduce seed in the second year.

It’s grown as an annual in my garden both as a food source to butterfly caterpillars and some of my favorite recipes. Snip this leafy stalk-like herb close to the ground and begin clipping on the outside edges of the bunch. Cutting parsley like this will encourage new growth. Keep pruning parsley all season. Usually parsley grows to about 12 inches tall in my garden the first year.

This second year, I just left the plant to grow a second year. It grew about three feet tall before blooming and setting seed. Black Swallowtail butterfly caterpillars which are black, green and yellow caterpillars feast on parley. So I always plant a lot of parsley. Parsley is slow to germinate from seed. Be patient, and keep the soil moist. Parsley leaves are very high vitamin C content. They also contain vitamin A, B1, B2, Calcium, Iron, and anti-inflammatory flavonoids.

I’m collecting seed this year to plant next spring. I’ve always purchased seed for growing both curly and flat leaved varieties. When I have a lot of fresh parsley, I tend to use it more. One of my favorite summer recipes includes loads of fresh parsley, mint, and tomatoes.

Really, it’s not good unless you have fresh parsley.

Recipe for Toubli is here:
Tabouli Salad and Lemon Thyme Couscous

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