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Petroselinum crispum. According to Culpeper’s Herbal, parsley is an herb of Mercury; it comforts the stomach and just generally cures what ails you! Indeed, parsley is considered highly cleansing and refreshing to the digestive system. This vital, ubiquitous herb is indispensable for brightening soups, salads and pastas. Parsley is best raised as transplants sown indoors 6 to 8 weeks prior to setting out after the last spring frost date. (If parsley re-seeds in our gardens, we leave them and consider ourselves lucky!) Grow parsley in pots in the kitchen for quick snipping. Vitamin A, C and iron-rich Parsley tolerates some shade; it loves rich, moist soil and regularly survives frost, dying back and re-emerging the following spring. Harvest by snipping leaves and stems as needed. Allow a few of these Umbelliferae family members to flower since the fragrant umbels attract desirable pollinating insects to your garden. Biennial.

Average seed life: 2 years

#3305 Paramount Curly-Leaf Parsley: 75 days
An improvement over regular, run-of-the-mill curly varieties, Paramount is dark verdant green with dense, triple-curled, kind-of-frilly leaves. If you like to plant Curly Parsley as an ornamental border in summer gardens, you will be happy to know that it has the most uniformly curled and thick coiffure of all. Growing from 18” to 24” tall, it is a terrific garnish but also has a good fresh, aromatic taste. (OP.)

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Packet of 1000 Seeds / $3.25

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#3310 Gigante d'Italia Parsley: 85 days
At first glimpse, Gigante resembles rangy, wild-looking celery! The deeply-indented leaves form an unexpectedly large, open plant growing to 3’ tall. Gigante is an obvious favorite of Italian cooks, since flat-leaved parsley is vital to their cuisine. These sweet, intensely-flavored leaves are most prized and central to almost every pasta sauce. Gigante is also perfect for gremolata, another savory Italian mixture used in Osso Buco, rice dishes or rubbed under the skin of fowl before roasting - try it! Combine the zest of three to four lemons, 1/3 to 1/2 cup chopped Gigante parsley, 1 minced garlic clove and 1 shallot. Using a sharp blade, chop everything together until finely minced and use immediately. (OP.)

Packet of 1000 Seeds / $3.25

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