This year I have decided that I WANT to be able to harvest long, straight, smooth supermarket delicious parsley roots - instead of the crippled squid-like things I usually get out of it. However, it requires quite a lot of thought and care?
The first step has been to get hold of the right variety: Lange Oberlaar, which has a reputation for being less likely to branch out. The seeds have then been soaked in water overnight to shorten the germination time, which can otherwise be up to 4 weeks.
The parsley root bed has been carefully selected: it is important that no cabbage has been grown the year before, which helps to propagate nematodes - which can give branched parsley roots (and eg also carrots). The bed has then been plastic-covered for the last week to raise the soil temperature to the optimum for parsley root seeds, about 18-22 °.
Yesterday, in any case (and the good weather) the bed has been made ready for sowing. In 3 rows across the bed (which will occasionally lie rows of peas, which were sown in May), 20 cm deep holes were made with the plant stick, with a distance of 10 cm in the rows. So is the planting distance more or less in place from the start ?.
After this, the holes have been filled with the finest compost from last year's tomato buckets, so that the delicate parsley root roots do not meet a single stone on their way down. At least not the first 20 cm.
Today it has been sown. 5-6 seeds per hole (the germination percentage is often a little low), where the best germinator will be selected while the others are removed - with a nail clipper! Thinning out by pulling up the plants can cause the remaining one to branch out. Finally, a little gravel is sprinkled over so it is easy to spot exactly where it has been sown.
And yes, today is even a "root day" according to Maria Thun's sowing calendar, so it is just planned that the sowing should take place today - so as to be on the safe side?