Tuesday, 8 October 2013


I let a few of last year's parsnips grow on this year, by mistake, and they all bloomed as flowers and set loads of seeds. I gathered the seeds that I wanted, more than need really, and then cut down the seed heads and dug up the roots. Then the ground was dug over. I noticed that lots of seeds had fallen to the ground but I ignored them and dug them in. To my surprise, lots and lots have germinated.

I have decided to leave them to grow on. In the spring, if they are still growing, I'll thin them out and leave them to grow into the delicious roots that are parsnip.

This whole process has been interesting. Parsnips are renown for being poor at germinating. A packet of parsnip seeds often have 2000 seeds in it and if they are sown outdoors it is common for only a few to germinate. These have been dropped onto the ground and roughly turned into the ground, yet there seems to be a lot of germination. I would normally sown parsnips in the late winter or spring and start them off indoors, but maybe I should be sowing them in the autumn. The soil is still very warm, whereas in spring the soil is always cold and at the moment the soil is pretty dry, whereas usually the soil in early spring is wet.

Every year there is something interesting to try and something to learn.

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