Lemon Thyme and Parsley Culture Problems
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: Cheryl Busuttil
Posted on: August 4, 1998

I have been growing herbs for a short time and have a couple of questions I was hoping you could answer. I recently purchased a lemon thyme plant but am having trouble finding out how to prune and propogate this plant. The plant doesn’t seem to be flowering very much. Should the flowers be cut off like sweet basil? The other problem has to do with curled leaf parsley. I planted the seeds directly in a large container, but as the plants grow the leaves are frilled with white and then loose all their green color. Are you familiar with this?

The flowers of lemon thyme are perfectly edible and don’t need to be cut off. Also since the plant is a perennial, flowering will not signal to the plant that it is time to die!

Parsley is a cool climate plant and will grow best during the few weeks before winter cuts it down. The summer of 1998 was (or is ) extremely hot and dry for us and if your summer is comparable you will have some unhappy parsley plants! If the roots cannot keep up with transpiration, then the tips of leaves won’t get enough water and die. If they die quickly enough they don’t have time to turn brown and just lose their chlorophyll and die. You could try to moderate the conditions around the plants by mulching them heavily and keeping them damp (not soggy!). The resulting cooler moister soil just might do the trick.

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