Harvesting parsley is quick and easy, and you can do it all summer long. In this post, you’ll learn exactly when and how to harvest parsley for the biggest yield, and the freshest flavor.
The steps for harvesting parsley are simple, and it will only take a few minutes of your time. After picking the fresh sprigs from your garden, you can add it into whatever dish you would like.
One of the beautiful things about parsley is that it will continue to grow new sprigs, even after you have cut some from your plant. So you can enjoy it all season long.
Read on to find out the best ways to harvest parsley from your garden. I’ll even give you tips for how to wash it and use it too.
Table of Contents
When To Harvest Parsley
You can pick the leaves any time you want, but wait until there are several stems on the plant. It’s best to harvest parsley on a cool, shady day, if possible.
Also, make sure the plant is well hydrated before you start snipping sprigs. Otherwise the leaves could be thin or wilted.
Parsley is a biennial that will bloom (bolt) the second year after planting. For the best flavor and texture, harvest it before the flowers start forming.
Related Post: How To Grow Parsley At Home
What Part Of Parsley Do You Use?
You can use both the leaves and the stems, just make sure they are green and healthy before picking them.
Check each one, and select only the stems that have dark green leaves on them. Discard any brown, yellow, or diseased leaves and stems.
How To Harvest Parsley
Harvesting parsley fresh from the garden is easy. You can simply pinch off a few leaves as you need them, or cut the entire stem.
Bring the sprigs inside right away, or drop them into a bowl or basket as you pick them. Keep them out of direct sunlight as you work though, or they will wilt faster.
Where To Cut Parsley
To pick parsley, simply cut or pinch off each sprig at the base (right at the soil level). This will allow the plant to branch out again, and produce even more fresh greens.
If you’re going to harvest all of your parsley at once, you could cut the entire plant down to the ground. Or you can pull it out completely, if that makes it easier to cut all the leaves and stems off of the plant.
How Often Can You Harvest Parsley?
Like basil, parsley is a cut-and-come again plant, meaning you don’t have to harvest it all at once. You can cut stems from it over and over again throughout the entire growing season.
So, any time a recipe calls for fresh parsley, simply walk out to your garden, and take the exact amount you need for it.
What To Do With Fresh Parsley From The Garden
Freshly harvested parsley leaves and sprigs can be used right away, or kept in the refrigerator for a few days. For longer term storage, check out all these easy ways to preserve parsley.
Personally, I use my garden fresh parsley on everything! It’s fantastic sprinkled over eggs, salads, or any dish I cook. Of course, it also makes a lovely garnish.
Washing Parsley Before Use
Since parsley sits low to the ground, it tends to get pretty dirty. If there’s no soil on the stems or leaves, then you don’t need to wash it.
But if there’s a lot of dirt, I toss my sprigs into a bowl of water, and let them soak for a few minutes. Then I gently swish it around to wash them off.
After that, I drain the water using a colander, then fill the bowl and swish it around again. I repeat this process until the water is clear. Then I use my salad spinner to spin it dry.
FAQs About Harvesting Parsley
Here are my answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about harvesting parsley. If you don’t see an answer to your question, please ask it in the comments section below.
Can I harvest parsley after it flowers?
Once it flowers, the leaves won’t taste as good. So it’s best to harvest the entire plant when parsley it starts to bolt.
You can cut it at the base to collect all of the remaining stems at once, or pull the whole plant out of the ground before cutting them off.
Does parsley regrow after cutting?
Yes, parsley will regrow after cutting. In fact, the more you cut the stems, the fuller the plant will get, and the larger your harvest will be.
Can you eat parsley stems?
Yes, parsley stems are tender enough to eat. So you can use the entire sprig, stem and all, or just pluck the leaves if you prefer.
Related Post: How To Grow Parsley From Seed: Step-By-Step
Harvesting parsley is a quick and simple task. Once you pick the fresh stems and leaves, there is no end to the amount of recipes that you will be able to enjoy it in.
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Share you tips for how to harvest parsley in the comments section below.