Harvesting Parsley Seeds for Next Year

Harvesting Parsley seeds is a fascinating process and an important part of growing this versatile herb. The seeds are actually the ‘fruits’ of the plant, containing all the genetic material needed to produce a new plant. To ensure that your Parsley crop is successful, it’s important to harvest and store parsley seeds correctly.

save parsley seeds

Where do Parsley Seeds Come From?

Parsley is a biennial herb, meaning it has a two-year life cycle. In the first year, Parsley produces leaves, stems and flowers. The flowers will then form seeds in the second year. Once the seeds are formed, they can be collected for storage or planting.

When to Harvest Parsley Seeds

The best time to harvest Parsley seeds is when the flowers start to dry out and turn brown. This generally occurs about 4-6 weeks after flowering has finished.

How to Harvest Parsley Seeds

Harvesting Parsley seeds is fairly straightforward. Simply cut off the flower heads from the stems and place them in a paper bag to dry. Once the flowers are completely dry, shake the bag gently to help release the seeds.

Preparing Parsley Seeds for Storage

Once harvested, it’s important to prepare the Parsley seeds for storage. To do this, remove any chaff or debris from the seed heads and spread them out on a sheet of paper to dry in a warm, dry location. Once they’re dry, store the seeds in an airtight container.

harvest parsley seeds

Conditions For Long-Term Parsley Seed Storage

For long-term storage of Parsley seeds, you’ll need to ensure that they are stored in a cool, dry location with low humidity. Ideally, the temperature should not exceed 4 degrees Celsius (40 Fahrenheit). It is also important to keep the container well sealed and away from direct sunlight as this can degrade the quality of the seeds over time. In addition, it is best to check the moisture level of your Parsley seed storage regularly to ensure that they do not become too wet or damp.

The shelf life of Parsley seeds can vary depending on their quality and condition when stored correctly in a cool and dry location. Generally speaking, if kept properly, Parsley seeds can last up to three years.

See below to discover the variation in germination rate depending on the length of seed storage.

  • 1 year – 46%
  • 2 years – 23%
  • 3 years – 23%

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