Parsley for Your Spring Garden
I’m already thinking about spring. It’s time to order seeds and think about what I will grow in my home garden. One seed I know I will be ordering is parsley. Parsley seed is best started indoors and then planted in the herb garden. Although it is very slow to germinate, don’t give up. Don’t be discouraged!
I grow both the curly and flat-leaved variety. They can be interchanged in most any recipe. However, dedicated Italian cooks will swear that flat-leaf parsley (or Italian parsley) is the very best.
Really, I use whichever is available (or which plants need a trim). When curley parsly leaves are small or young, they are milder and sweeter; the full parsley flavor comes as the plant matures. Its flavor intensifies even more after it is chopped for recipes.
La Chambra pottery to serve Braised Beef Short Ribs with Parsley.
Photo by Patsy Bell Hobson
Parsley is an excellent source of vitamins A and C. In fact, a glass of parsley juice would have as much vitamin C as a glass of orange juice. Now, I’m not advocating that you give up your glass of morning sunshine—the idea is probably not a trend setter—but it might help you feel virtuous about eating your garnish.
If this is your first try at growing herbs from seed, don’t give up. Start seeds indoors to get a head start. When you eventually transplant your parsley, also scatter a few seeds near the plant. The plant will serve as a marker to remind you when the seed does come up.
Volunteer seeds are always the first up in the garden. These curly leaf parsley will go into the first spring greens garden salad.