Collecting Seeds | Herbs

Harvesting Parsley Seeds: Saving Seeds from Parsley

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Would you like to have parsley that you can use all year long? Try harvesting parsley seeds from your garden so that you can grow parsley anytime you want. It’s very easy to learn how to harvest parsley seeds, and I’m happy to show you how!

After its growing season, parsley produces seeds that you can save for next year’s garden.

Let’s dig into the details on how you can harvest parsley seeds for your garden next season (or indoors!).

Harvesting Parlsey Seeds from the plant into a little paper envelope
Harvesting Parsley Seeds from the plant into a little paper envelope

When does parsley produce seeds?

Parsley is a biennial herb, which means it completes its growth cycle in two years. During the first year, parsley produces its green leaves and stems used in cooking. When the second year of growth arrives, parsley plants produce a flower stalk and more leaves. Seeds eventually form when the flowers fade, typically in the late summer or in autumn.

What do parsley seeds look like?

Parsley seeds look like little tiny crescents with contrasting dark and light brown coloring. The seeds are fairly small and lightweight. On first glance, parsley seeds look like tiny footballs.

Harvested Parsley Seeds in a Yellow Paper Envelope
Harvested Parsley Seeds look like little crescents or mini footballs with stripes.

Harvesting Parsley Seeds

Learning how to harvest parsley seeds is totally easy once you know what parsley seeds look like!

Collecting seeds works well with a little dish or paper bag to help catch the seeds. You should also have a marker handy to label your seeds.

Before you do ANYTHING, be absolutely 100% sure you are harvesting parsley seeds from a parsley plant and NOT poison hemlock seeds from a poison hemlock.

The two plants are in the same family and have a slightly similar appearance. Of course, poison hemlock is extremely toxic and dangerous.

(You can learn more about it and what poison hemlock looks like in my post on removing poison hemlock.)

Parsley Plant with Seeds
Italian Parsley Plant with Seeds

How to Harvest Parsley Seeds

The process almost couldn’t be easier! Simply follow these steps on how to harvest parsley seed from your garden.

  1. Inspect your parsley plants for dried seed heads.
  2. Snip or pinch the seed heads off the plant and into a brown paper bag or paper envelope.
  3. Gently roll the seeds between your finger and thumb to free them from the dried stem.
  4. Write the variety and year on the seed envelope or paper bag.
Parsley Seed Head with brown seeds for saving
Parsley Seed Head with brown seeds for saving

Saving Parsley Seeds: Parsley Seed Storage

Collecting parsley seeds takes only moments. Once you harvest the seeds, make sure you save them carefully for next year.

Here are some tips on storing parsley seeds.

  • Harvest parsley seeds on a dry, sunny day. Avoid rainy days for seed saving.
  • Store parsley seeds in a paper seed envelope for best results. This helps prevent mold if any moisture does remain.
  • Label parsley seeds with the type and date. If you’re growing more than one kind of parsley, be aware that seeds may be a cross of the different varieties.

How long do parsley seeds last?

Parsley seeds last between one and four years, according to a seed viability guide on JohnnySeeds.com. Keep in mind that storage conditions and quality of seeds saved also impact parsley seed viability.

Gathering parsley seeds on a dry day allows for better seed storage. Use caution to avoid contact with any moisture when storing seeds.

Finding Parsley Seeds for Sale

Finding good parsley seeds for sale is exciting, especially when you have an awesome recipe or two in mind for your herbs. My personal favorite is our garlic knots!

Last year I bought an Italian parsley plant and this year it produced seeds! Those are the ones I’m saving in this post.

Italian parsley seeds harvesting from a plant
Italian parsley seeds harvesting from a plant

When looking for quality parsley seeds, be sure to check reviews from gardeners who’ve had good experiences so far. This should give you a bit of insight into germination rate, flavor, productivity, and so forth.

Some places to find parsley seeds for sale include:

  • Little Shop of Seeds – this is where I bought lots of my seeds.
  • Amazon – Find a wide variety of seeds with lots of reviews.
  • Etsy – You can also find quite a lot of seeds for sale on Etsy.
  • Lowes, Home Depot, Agway, etc. – Also look for clearance seeds at Agway and elsewhere during the off-season!

You can find lots of other places to buy parsley seeds, but these are just a few I’ve tried or considered.

If you have any questions or fun stories about harvesting parsley seeds, be sure to hit us up in the comments. We love hearing from you!

Happy Gardening!

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