triple curled parsley as a perennial

Here in zone 8, put in triple curled parsley plants last year. I had always considered them to be cool-season annuals, but they grow surprisingly well here. Kept some going through the winter (they even seem to be tolerant of mild frost), and planted more this spring. The difference between the old and new plants is noticeable, though. Old ones are deeper green but with somewhat more flattened leaves. Taste is the same, as far as I can tell.
Is there any disadvantage to keeping such plants going through the winter? That is, does the quality of the leaf continue to change?
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If nothing else, you will make your local Swallowtail butterflies happy. :-) Watch for the larvae. They love parsley so it's nice that you planted extra for them!
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What do those larvae look like?
Really, the performance of these plants is AMAZING. Can't believe I used to spend real money in stores on fresh parsley ...
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In the second year the leaves will go thin and feathery, then they will go to seed and then they will die, there is no way to stop them. If you leave a few for the seed heads to mature they will self-sow quite well.
David
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I've found the two varieties of parsley whihc I grow to be tolerant of heavy frosts. I let them go to seed in the second year and then harvest some of the seedheads and throw the seeds around the garden and let the remainder of the heads left on the plant just drop where they are and grow again in the same spot. I always have lots of parsley and like it as it's tough, attractive and it's food as well.
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I like that bit about strewing parsley seeds. I have dill that volunteers all over the place, and the same it seems with a bit of fennel. Reminds me of a gardening book I have about a Japanese gardener whose philosphy was to let plants grow wherever they sprang up. He felt that we tend to fool around too much trying to amend soils instead of letting the plants themselves choose where to grow. . . or NOT! Seems to me it's a very serindipidous way to garden, finding an edible plant here and there, but sure takes the challenge out of dieting.
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