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Thread: Why are my parsley plant's leaves turning yellow?

  1. #1

    Why are my parsley plant's leaves turning yellow?


    I have a llittle potted herb garden on my back deck which I love very much. It's basically a big pot of parsley, a big pot of Basil, and a big pot of orange mint.

    I also have a small parsley plant on the other side of the deck, in a flower box on the railing, which gets shade in the mid to late afternoon.

    Well, everything is doing fine except the big pot of parsley, which sits in the full sun, all day long. It has grown beautifully, very big and bushy and I've been snipping each and every day for salads and omelets and practically everything else. It was doing great until several days ago, when the green color became very light, and now there are yellow leaves amongst the very pale green ones.

    The other little parsley plant at the other side is doing fabulously--its leaves are big and firm and very dark green.

    So, what I've done so far (because I really do not want to move its location) is cut off all the yellow leaves for a fresh start, and gave it plant food yesterday.

    Is anyone familiar with this happening to Parsley, and what was your solution?

    Thanks for any help anyone might have.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Out looking for a sous chef
    I don't know how bad your afternoon sun is, but mine's pretty brutal. The only time parsley has done well for me is when it's in a sunny location all day until afternoon (maybe 2:30-3? or 3:30?), then it's in shade. I think you need to move it, or it'll go downhill fast. If you don't want to move it, then you might have some luck shading it with a very large potted plant, such as a hibiscus--but if you leave it where it is now, unshaded, I think you'll lose it within the week. Good luck!
    If you're afraid of butter, use cream. ~~ Julia Child

    As you cook, you enjoy omniscience about food that no amount of label reading can match. Having retaken control of the meal from the food scientists, you know exactly what is in it. (Unless you start w/cream of mushroom soup, in which case all bets are off.) To reclaim control over one's food, to take it back from industry & science, is no small thing; indeed, in our time, cooking from scratch qualifies as subversive. ~~ Michael Pollan

  3. #3
    Dear Testkitchen45,

    You are truly a friend! I just read your post, and I've just returned from the deck, and the deed is done. I moved the pot over to the other side, directly underneath the flower box with the other little (flourishing) parsley plant. It actually looks great there, it doesn't interfere with the chairs for the umbrella table, which I thought it might, and it gets sun up to the afternoon, when it then becomes shaded.

    I will continue to give it a sip of water each day, and watch for the new growth which hopefully will be the original dark green, as when it was brand new. I have my fingers crossed I've saved it just in time.

    Thank you again!


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    SF Bay Area
    I also have parsley growing in containers. I use it for filler plants along with my flowers and snip as needed for cooking. I am not sure where you are located but I have my plants in full sun pretty much all day. I get some yellow leaves at the bottom of the plants occasionally but I think they are older leaves and I trim as needed. A few yellow leaves once in a while are not much of a concern for me with my plants.

    If Testkitchen45ís suggestion doesnít work for you, might want to try cutting back on the water a bit. What works for me is to give the parsley a good drink about every other day unless the weather is very hot then I water every day.

    Gardening is pretty much trial and error to see what works for you and your location.

    Good luck. Let us know how it goes.
    Beware of the dog and I wouldn't trust the cat either ~ on a sign somewhere

  5. #5
    Dear Vinca,

    Thank you very much for the wonderful additional information. I'll start watering every other day. The weather has been in the mid 90's the past two days, but tomorrow will be back down to mid 80's. And, I will definitely let everyone know how it turns out.


  6. #6
    Have you fertilized your herbs? I'm slowly learning that yellow could indicate that my plants need food.
    We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It's the best deal man has ever made.
    -M. Acklam

  7. #7

    Update on my Parsley plant...

    Thank you all so much for your great suggestions. I've followed all of them, especially moving the plant, and including giving it plant food.

    And--it's doing fabulously now! Not a yellow leaf in sight, and the new growth is nice and green.

    Thanks again!


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