weird second year parsley

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Hi All,
My second year Italian Parsley looks really weird. Others of my customers, that actually know what they are doing, showed me theirs, and it looks the same: big stems, small leaves, flowers (if you can call them that) at the top.
Questions:
1) what parts do you eat, just the small leaves?
2) what do you cut? The stem all the way to the ground?
Many thanks, -T
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Todd wrote:

It is preparing to die, there is nothing you can do about it, there is no reason to cut anything other than to eat. Or dig out the whole plant and make way for something else. All the leaves are still edible. I tend to use the larger leaves rather than the feathery little ones but that is just preference. Plant more soon if you want parsley and for an assured supply in future plant at least yearly.
D
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On 05/23/2014 03:08 PM, David Hare-Scott wrote:

Hi David,
Thank you!
Is that what they call "Bolting"?
-T
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On 24/05/2014 9:35 AM, Todd wrote:

No. I'm sure some people would say that your parsley was bolting but bolting is a term that applies to premature flowering and setting of seed. Your parsley is doing what a mature parsley plant should be doing.
Bolting can be caused by a number of things but often unseasonable weather or planting outside normal planting time will bring on bolting. A common example of bolting would be lettuces where the onset of sudden unseasonable hot weather will cause then to send up a flower spike.
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On 05/23/2014 05:19 PM, Fran Farmer wrote:

Hi David,
I have a "Black Thumb". The only thing I can successfully grow are dandelions. I appreciate you sharing.
-T
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On 05/23/2014 08:09 PM, Todd wrote:

Oops, should have said "Hi Fran". :'[

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On 24/05/2014 1:09 PM, Todd wrote:

Well don't fail to find the usefulness of dandelions. True dandelions (as opposed to flatweeds that have a flower more than a single flower head) can be used in a weed pie which is truly delicious and the French actually grow 'improved' varieties for culinary purposes. Additionally one of the most delightful gardes I ever seen was a 5 acre plot with a meadow of dandelions with paths mown through the dandelions going to various sitting arbours.
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On 05/25/2014 04:42 PM, Fran Farmer wrote:

Hi Fran,
EAT THE WEED! Sorry, I will get myself under control. I use to kill Purslain until I found out it was food. It grows wild around here. Now the poor dears get pampered.
I remember from my college days and Economic Botany, a weed is not what you think it is:
Weeds:
1) agriculture discard. (Once grown for food.)
2) small seeds or seeds that mask themselves as other seeds
3) grows on disturbed soil
Have you ever noticed that Dandelions only grow where you walk? This is why. Our local cow pasture break out in a lovely yellow every spring (cows hooves).
So the solution to weeds is to eat them! Purslain is really hard to kill. Lots of really tiny seeds and loves where I walk and my garden (I turn the soil over every sprint to kill all the grass in it, which "disturbs" the soil much to mu Purslain's delight).
Some advocates say that Purslain is the most nutritious plant on the planet. Tastes like watercress. I use it in salads, on burgers, or just for munchies. Love it with my Paleo ranch dressing.
Thank you for the mentoring. My thumb is still black, BUT AT LEAST I CAN GROW WEEDS!
-T
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On 26/05/2014 2:19 PM, Todd wrote:

Can't say that I have. The best dandelions I have are in my rose garden but I don't walk in there.

We breed cows and we don't seem to have any dandelions in our pastures. Perhaps the cows choose to eat them first or perhaps our climate is not moist enough for any dandelions to germinate.

I've always liked the following definition for weed: "a plant growing in the wrong place".
Another thought bubble on weeds - often weeds were once much used in domestic work to dye wool and other fibres. Also some were used to line shoes or to make 'candle' tapers (verbascum), or maybe even some could have been used to to tan skins??? I don't know about the latter thought bubble but I do know about the dye plants used for fibre.
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On 05/26/2014 07:32 PM, Fran Farmer wrote:

Hi Fran,
Oh yes. Let the cows in and the Dandelions will disappear as if by magic! Do you do the pasture rotation thing? Grass --> Cows --> Sheep --> Turkeys --> Chickens --> Grass? Watched a documentary on that. Absolutely fascinating science behind it. You are actually raising grass and not cows!
Do you do Cow-Calf? Or do you raise them for eatin'?
Thank you for teaching me!
-T
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On 24/05/2014 8:08 AM, David Hare-Scott wrote:

Pendant alert. It should be 'customers who' not 'customers that'. The only time it should be 'customers that' would be if the customers were not live humans.
I'm being a pedant because I've recently noticed that this way of writing is common amongst USians and the likely outcome of that will be that it will escape from the US so it will soon hit our shores. That will cause me and others severe irritation and distress.

You can still eat any of it. The purpose for which it would be used (or at least used by anyone who can, and does, cook) would vary. The leaves can still be be used in dishes, as a garnish or sprinkled on the top of soups or used in trbbouli etc (ie a prime use) whilst the stalks and the flower head would be used in stock pots, stews or casseroles. It's past it's prime but still useful in many ways but best for seed saving.

I'd suggest leaving it to go to seed if you can afford to let it occupy the space for that long. I do that with all my Italian parsley and then I drop the seeds all round the garden so that I'm never without several parsley patches because I do this routinely.
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On 05/23/2014 05:11 PM, Fran Farmer wrote:

Hmmm. Live customers. An interesting concept.
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On 24/05/2014 10:46 AM, Todd wrote:

Indeed it is. :-))
Given my observation of shoppers who seldom appear to have many functioning neurons, Robotic customers might be worth considering as an option.
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On 5/23/2014 5:11 PM, Fran Farmer wrote:

You must have meant "Pedant alert."
pendant   pend·ant [pen-duhnt] noun Also, pendent. 1. a hanging ornament, as an earring or the main piece suspended from a necklace. 2. an ornament suspended from a roof, vault, or ceiling. 3. a hanging electrical lighting fixture; chandelier. 4. that by which something is suspended, as the ringed stem of a watch.
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On 24/05/2014 10:48 AM, David E. Ross wrote:

Of course you are quite right, fellow Pedant.
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On 05/23/2014 05:11 PM, Fran Farmer wrote:

Thank you!
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Todd wrote:

Yup. Look up biennial, which is what it is.
D
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David E. Ross wrote:

Oh it depends what is hanging off it.....
D
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Todd wrote:

Parsley is a biennial. Its 2nd year growth usually looks different and doesn't taste as good (generally somewhat bitter). You'd do better planting new seed each year, or follow the directions here for how to harvest seed: http://www.howtogardenadvice.com/plant_list/herb/grow_parsley.html I grow curly leaf parsley, I think it tastes better than flat leaf, it's sweeter... eaten raw I prefer the curly leaves, in cooking I use the curly leaf stems. If you want to grow parsley for its roots then leave the best of your 2nd year plants and plant new parsley elsewhere... if you allow parsley to reseed in place that's very sloppy gardening as you'll not know which are new and which are 2nd year plants... farmers rotate their parsley crop to a different field each year.
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On 05/24/2014 07:53 AM, Brooklyn1 wrote:

Thank you!
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