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Veseys Home » Growing Vegetables »  Parsnip

Pastinaca sativa


Parsnip seed does not keep well from year to year; use only fresh seed, sowing as early as ground can be worked. Sow seed ½" deep in rows 18-24" apart. Thin to 3 inches apart. Adequate moisture and a cool soil temperature of 15-18°C (60-65°F) is essential for good germination which may take up to 21 days.


Full sun with a soil pH of 6.5. Requires a rich, deeply cultivated soil with plenty of organic matter, incorporate compost or well rotted manure prior to planting.


Harvest any time once roots are adequately sized. Parsnips are tender and flavourful in the fall. A few light frosts will improve the flavour. They may also be mulched and left in ground over winter and dug as the ground thaws.


Parsnips are fairly pest-free and disease-free, however, they are susceptible to root maggot damage. Use row covers to protect young seedlings early in the season.


Bush bean, garlic, onion, pea, pepper, potato, radish.