London (change)
5 messages
21/09/2013 at 14:56

Hi everyone, I need some advice. I have a row of parsnips in my raised bed which have grown really well, almost too well, I think. The foliage is at least 50cm high and as it was beginning to topple over, I chopped off a third. What I don't know is, when do I start harvesting them, do I wait until the foliage dies down first?

Thanks for your help.

21/09/2013 at 15:21

I harvest them as needed - leave them in the ground to get frosted, they'll be much sweeter. 

21/09/2013 at 15:58

OK, will do, thanks Dove! Just hope they are not all foliage and no roots!

21/09/2013 at 16:03

I wouldn't start harvesting until after the first frost - remember that the fat root is the parsnip's store of energy to get it through the winter so it can grow and flower next year.  It should be reabsorbing nutrients from those leaves at this time of year. 

21/09/2013 at 16:17

And they increase the size of the root as the leaves die down. The leaves on ours often reach a metre in height.

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