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Location: Jersey

A little help about "harvesting"

This is my second attemt at growing herbs after my failed last attempt.

I am growing parsely, chives and basil. The basil has really taken off and providing loads when needed and I am cutting it just above the second row of leaves on the stalk.

With the chives and parsely I am not sure how to cut it or if mine are growing well. both have been going for around 25 days

my chives are about 15cms tall but drooping to the sides, not sticking straight up. there appear to be black things at the end of some of the stalks

my parsly is about 10cms high and one set of leaves on each stalk.

any help etc gratefully received.

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Greener Thumb
Posts: 1316
Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2010 5:48 pm
Location: Ecuador, USDA Zone 13, at 10,000' of altitude

I'd start pinching the parsley now - you've got single stems but likely multiple leaflets; don't take them all at once, rather take the edgemost ones first by pinching. This way the plants will branch out.

The chives are harvested by cutting the scapes (the leaves) near ground level. The ones with "black things" are likely about to flower - leave them alone and they'll pop open. Chive flowers are very tasty in salads.

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Green Thumb
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Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2010 5:17 pm
Location: Western MA

Sounds pretty late in the season for parsley to do much. It should have enough leaves that you don't harvest more than one quarter of the plant at a time until you're ready to cut the whole thing down before frost hits it. Even though it's biennial, I've never had much luck with it in the second year, but you might have better chances in NJ. (I start my parsley indoors still well into winter, as it's a pretty slow starter, then plant it outside in dappled shade and harvest through the summer up until frost, only taking the outer leaves. Some shade seems to keep it from bolting. This year, with the heat, things didn't go so well, but it's still kicking for another week or two)

Chives grown from seed would probably fair best not being harvested heavily (or at all) this year to allow the bulbs time to establish. After that, they can be harvested pretty heavily throughout the year with no ill effects. (Not sure about the black things at the ends, unless they're still seed coats stuck to the tips. A picture or better explanation might help.

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Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 7:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M(11/B)

I suspect ross is from Jersey as in UK and not NEW Jersey. :wink:

You're right, though, MC, that parsley will survive the winter in the ground at least in this part of New Jersey. I can continue to harvest until hard freeze, and with some mulch protection, they'll even stay green or come back very early next spring. With last winter's ridiculous snowcover, ALL my parsley survived, and grew to be 3~4ft tall in the summer when they bolted and flowered. :shock: They were EXCELLENT beneficial insect attractors, and the chartreuse flowers were strikingly pretty as well.

I usually dig up a few of the parsley, pot them up, and bring them indoors for winter kitchen window herbs. Same with basil. They supply a bit of extra flavor and garnish until around February, when basil will give up the ghost and parsley will get a sudden infestation of aphids. :evil:

I've only grown flat Chinese leeks and Japanese garlic chives so I can't advise on regular tubular chives, but from all I hear, they are pretty easy to grow. :D

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Green Thumb
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Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2010 5:17 pm
Location: Western MA

applestar wrote:I suspect ross is from Jersey as in UK and not NEW Jersey. :wink::D
Oops! :oops: Having lived in NYC for many years, I hear "Jersey" and automatically put a "New" in front. Sorry!

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