Parsley likes well-worked, well-drained soil with moderate organic content. Don't fertilize before planting. Plant it from seed; they take a long time to germinate, but you can speed up the
process by soaking them in warm water overnight before planting. Plant the seeds a quarter-inch deep in rows 18 to 24 inches apart. Thin the seedlings to 12 to 18 inches apart when they're growing strongly. Or start seeds indoors six weeks before the average date of last frost.
You don't need to fertilize the soil for parsley to grow well. Detailed information on fertilizing is given in "Spadework: The Essential Soil" in Parti.
It's important to keep the soil moderately moist; parsley needs a regular supply of water to keep producing new leaves.
The parsley caterpillar is the only pest you're likely to have to contend with. Hand-pick it off the plants.
Parsley has no serious disease problems.
From planting to harvest is about 70 to 90 days, and a 10-foot row of parsley will keep you — and all your neighbors — well supplied. To encourage the growth of new foliage, cut off the flower stalk when it appears. The flower stalk shoots' up taller than the leaves, and the leaves on it are much smaller. Harvest parsley leaves any time during the growing season; cut them off at the base of the plant. The plant will retain its rich color until early winter. Many gardeners harvest the entire parsley plant in fall
and dry it; you can also bring the whole plant inside for the winter.
Parsley lends itself well to freezing and drying. Store the dried leaves in an airtight container. Detailed information on storing and preserving is given in Part 3.
Parsley's reputation as a garnish often does it a disservice—it gets left on the side of the plate. In fact it's been known for thousands of years for its excellent flavor and versatility. Add chopped parsley to buttered potatoes and vegetables; toss a little on a sliced tomato salad along with a pinch of basil. Add it to scrambled eggs or an omelette aux fine herbs. Parsley is a natural breath-freshener.
Common name: rosemary Botanical name: Rosemarinus officinalis Origin: Mediterranean
Albus; Collingwood Ingram; Tuscan Blue; Prostratus; Lockwood de Forest.
Rosemary is a half-hardy, evergreen, perennial shrub with narrow, aromatic, grey-green leaves. It can grow six feet tall, anc the flowers are small, light blue or white. It's a perennial, but in areas with very cold winters it's grown as an annual. Rosemary is one of the traditional strewing herbs; in the language of flowers its message is "remember." In Shakespeare's play, Ophelia gives Hamlet a sprig of rosemary
"for remembrance." Keep up the old tradition of a herb of remembrance by tying a sprig of rosemary to a gift.
Where and when to grow
Rosemary can handle temperatures a bit below freezing and tolerates cold better in a sandy, well-drained location. Less-
it into the house for winter use. In the spring take stem cuttings to propagate your new crop.
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