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parsnip Pastinaca sativa

Parsnip has been planted 6 times by Growstuff members.


parsnip is an annual crop (living and reproducing in a single year or less)

Median lifespan

240 days

First harvest expected

240 days after planting


parsnip plantings


parsnip harvests


parsnip seeds


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Planted from


Harvested for


Crop Map

Only plantings by members who have set their locations are shown on this map.

What people are saying about parsnips

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How to save seeds

Beans, peas and corn: remove husks and allow seeds to dry out – this may take a couple of weeks, then remove casings and store.

Pumpkins and melons: seeds need to be washed and set aside to dry for a week or so before storage.

Lettuce, celery, parsnip, rocket, carrots, leeks, onions and radicchio: allow plants to set seed (tall stems of flowers will eventually appear), pick once the seed heads are brown and crisp sounding. Hang upside down in plastic bags for a week or so, rustle the remaining seeds out of the stems and store.

Cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, chillies and capsicums: scoop out flesh and wash through a sieve. Lay the seeds on a paper towel and place somewhere warm and dry for a week or two before storing. Be careful with chilli seeds as they can sting, so avoid touching your eyes after touching the seeds. Once completely dry, cut the paper towel into small pieces and store seeds on the towel in an envelope.

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Preparing for winter

I'm going to attempt to grow potato over winter. To prepare I'm going to do a full garden bed of mustard and then dig the greens into the soil. Add compost and blood and bone. I've never attempted potato over winter. It can get very wet here, and in August it drops below 0C for a few weeks. Also on the list to plant is parsnip and carrot.

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Banana s have taken off. Both doing well. They only have about a month before the weather starts getting a bit cold, nights are already getting down to 50F some nights. Will have to think about frost protection soon.

Grapes that survived are doing well. The one I had to cut back, while it's still weaker than the others, has recovered significantly and no longer looks to be at the end of its rope.

Fig is fruiting and has 13 unripe figs on it. I hope they will ripen within the next 3 weeks because the weather will begin to cool down in October. I can't believe the fig is fruiting so well the same year I planted it! Next year I am gonna plant a tiger fig. Always assuming the Kadota fig does not die right after leafing out the way the bareroot figs I planted did. I have to say the trees I planted this year are doing so well I am going to try to mostly plant trees in may from now on instead of bareroot trees.

Suebelle white sapote is doing all right but its growth has slowed down a lot. I think that the white sapotes are not too fond of the HOT weather. The new bigger white sapote, which the nursery has identified as McDill, has been drooping on hot afternoons. I may move it to the part shade on the south side of the house, which has cooler afternoons and warmer nights. It set one fruit so far (still flowering, plenty more chances) but that fruit turned black on one side and I think it will die.

Some of the seeds I saved from the festival of fruit are sprouting! I didn't label them well (honestly didn't expect them to sprout and I didn't have any labels handy and I just wanted to get everything planted) but I believe that I have either two lychees or a lychee and a rambutan, some ground cherry (which will probably not live, but I saved more seeds to plant when it is actually spring), a jackfruit, two of something puzzling (small sprouts that aren't lychees, puzzling because I didn't plant two pots of any one thing that should have such small sprouts), and one pot with two of something I'm pretty sure is the pineapple guava sprouting in it.

I don't expect the lychees to do well because it's really too cold for them here and I think they're pretty sensitive to salts and won't like our soil or our water. But it's fun to sprout them anyway. They have already reached the bottim of their peat pots and need deeper pots to grow in.

Oh and I have a random seedling growing in the compost planter. See I have this one huge planter that I got for $10 for planting root vegetables that need space but won't survive the predations of critters if I try to grow them in ground. I grow sweet potatoes in it some years. What I do is, every fall I empty it out into buckets and fill it with all the partially finished compost I have in order to make space in the compost bins. Then I add as much of the remaining soil as I can fit on top, and use the rest to enrich the other beds. In the fall I plant alliums in the layer of soil. They don't grow down into the unfinished compost too much, and the compost gets plenty of water and stuff and finishes over the winter and the spring. Usually the alliums die abut the time to plant sweet potatoes, but this year in early spring I planted parsnips and stuff that would be done around the same time as the alliums. But a kadota squash vine volunteered from the compost, and I decided to grow it instead of sweet potatoes. Now in addition to that I have one small piece of sweet potato that grew randomly, and a parsnip that I left to get really big, and what looks like a peach seedling.

I might just let that seedling grow in the compost planter and buy a new planter to be the new compost planter.

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First strawberry!

I had the first tiny strawberry of the season today! I'm looking forward to many more.

Also, I transplanted a lot of seedlings into the community garden today: 2 cucumbers, 3 green beans, 2 tongue-of-fire beans, an ornamental sweet potato, and an artichoke.

I also scattered some lettuce seed, sowed trenches for radish, carrot, and parsnip seeds, and planted more green beans, tongue-of-fire beans, and several sunflowers.

We'll see what takes.

And I transplanted one of my alpine strawberries into a bigger pot, which means that eventually I'll have a lot of big strawberry pots.

My serviceberry bushes looked a bit yellow today. I'll drop some leaf compost on them, but if anyone knows more about what they need, I'd love to hear it.

  • View all parsnip seeds (4)
  • View all parsnip plantings (6)
  • View all parsnip harvests (1)
  • How to grow parsnips

    Grown for: root (2)

    Plant from: seed (4), (1)

    Plant in: sun (4), semi-shade (1), (1)

    Scientific names

    • Pastinaca sativa

    Alternate names

    None known.

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